MSU Named Among Top University Sales Programs

Posted on: May 12, 2014

top-sales-universities-featuredMSU has been named among the 2014 "Top Universities for Professional Sales Education" for its Sales Communication Specialization.

The list, recently released by the Sales Education Foundation (SEF), recognizes university programs for preparing and placing top talent in professional selling roles.

MSU's Sales Communication Specialization has been on the list for the past five years, or ever since it was established in 2009.

"I am pleased that our hard word and dedication to training professional salespeople is once again being recognized," said Jennifer Rumler, Managing Director of the Sales Communication Specialization.

MSU's Sales Communication Specialization is one of the best in the country for preparing students for professional selling careers and is the only one in the nation that leverages the strengths of two nationally ranked colleges: the College of Communication Arts and Sciences (CAS) and the Eli Broad College of Business. It also is one of the few programs of its kind that has a required internship component.

Students in MSU's Sales Communication Specialization major in a variety of areas such as Advertising, Communication, Finance, General Business, Marketing, and Supply Chain Management. In addition to earning their degrees in these areas, they add a specialization in Sales Communication, which includes a minimum of 500 hours of experiential learning outside the classroom, including a 300-hour professional sales internship.

"Our students are trained in phone calling, CRM systems, questioning techniques, needs identification, sales management, communication skills (both verbal and written), and they are required to complete a sales internship," Rumler said. "With sales experience under their belts, students seeking entry-level positions are a step ahead of the game compared to the pool of entry-level employees who have not had internship or sales experience.

"According to the Sales Education Foundation, (these students) also tend to ramp up 30-percent faster than students without sales education. Candidates for full time positions who have gone through our program are readily able to identify situations in which their skills were challenged and how their sales education helped them during their internships, thereby giving them multiple talking points during the interview process."

Every summer, Rumler supervises more than 40 interns. Sales Communication Specialization students have interned at a number of national and international companies, including Chrysler, Dow Corning, Eaton Corporation, Ford Motor Company, General Mills, General Motors, Google, Kohl's, Marathon Oil, Morgan Stanley, Nestle, Proctor & Gamble, Target and Whirlpool to name a few.

For the past five years, students who have graduated from the Sales Communication Specialization have had 100-percent job placement.

"I attribute our success rate to several things: 1) the intense application and interview process students must go through prior to completing the program; 2) requiring internships of all of our sales students so they can gain professional experience in sales before going into a sales career; 3) the determination of our students and their willingness to engage in a minimum of 500 hours of experiential learning outside the classroom; and 4) the investment of resources from our corporate partners, both financial and human, and their continued engagement with us both in and out of the classroom," Rumler said.

The Sales Education Foundation supports university-level sales education programs by providing scholarships and grants, creating educational materials, and raising public awareness regarding the benefits of professional sales careers. The organization seeks to ensure that every student in every university has the opportunity to benefit from professional sales education opportunities.

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