College of Business Administration Recognized for Top Professional Sales Education
Kent State University was recently recognized by the Sales Education Foundation as a “2014 Top University for Professional Sales Education.”
Ellen Daniels, a Marketing and Entrepreneurship instructor for the College of Business Administration, currently oversees the sales internship requirement for the certificate and teaches multiple marketing courses. “As a relatively new certificate, being recognized is quite an accomplishment,” said Daniels.
The Professional Sales Certificate was first offered in fall 2013 and requires students take an additional 15 credits, including three for a professional sales internship. Daniels, an alumna of Kent State University’s MBA program, knows the advantage the certificate will provide students in the field of sales or any career in marketing.
“The job market is highly competitive for graduates, and the Professional Sales Certificate offers students the opportunity to not only learn professional selling skills, but it also differentiates them from other job seekers,” said Daniels. “One of the great selling points is that this certificate can enhance the resumes of all KSU majors as selling skills are becoming increasingly important to employers.”
Daniels said that she hopes to see the certificate continue to grow as the need for professional salespeople continues to grow. “Because this certificate is valuable to all majors, we hope that students will take advantage of these courses,” she said. “There are many aspects of selling that we may be able to offer in the future to help our students perform better in the marketplace.”
Daniels provided two students, senior entrepreneurship major Justin Carter and senior managerial marketing major Brittany Hughes, with additional sales experience by taking them to the National Collegiate Sales Competition, the largest and oldest sales role-play competition in existence, hosted by Kennesaw State University in Atlanta. “As a relatively new certificate program, we compete with highly regarded programs at Ohio University, the University of Toledo and Bowling Green State University,” she said. “This assists our KSU graduates in finding better jobs by validating their efforts in the sales classes.”
The students competed against students from more than 80 universities and had the opportunity to network with professionals from large corporations such as Hewlett-Packard, Whirlpool and McAfee, etc. As a direct result of the event, both Carter and Hughes were hired by Hewlett-Packard following graduation.
Four additional students graduated with their Professional Sales Certificates in spring 2014; including fashion merchandising majors Sharea Elkins and Autumn Richards; business management major Steven Lopez and marketing major Kenneth Rundo.
“Last year our first certificate graduate had a medical sales job before graduation; he is doing very well,” said Daniels. “I fully expect all new grads to find professional jobs utilizing their sales skills in whatever career they choose.”
Daniels’ experience in sales provides an excellent backdrop for the certificate. She started her career as a production manager for an Akron advertising agency and then became Director of Communications for Kent State University at Stark. She then held positions at EY as Senior Management Consultant, Communications Director at Harshaw-Filtrol Corporation and District Manager for J. Walter Thompson Advertising.