Kent State University's College of Business Administration was recently recognized by the Sales Education Foundation as a 2014 Top University for Professional Sales Education.
Ellen Daniels, faculty member of the College of Business Administration at KSU, said the honor is quite an accomplishment.
"We compete against highly regarded programs at Ohio University, the University of Toledo and Bowling Green State University," she said. "This assists our Kent State University graduates in finding better jobs by validating their efforts in the sales classes."
This is less than a year after the Professional Sales Certificate was first offered in fall 2013 through KSU's Department of Marketing and Entrepreneurship. It requires that students take an additional 15 credits, including three for a professional sales internship. Daniels said she knows that the certificate will give students an edge 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," Daniels said. "One of the great selling points is that this certificate can enhance the résumés of all KSU majors as selling skills are becoming increasingly important to employers."
According to the Sales Education Foundation, approximately 50 percent of all graduates with a business degree will enter the workforce in a sales-oriented role. Students with a sales education move up 50 percent faster and turnover 30 percent less than their non-sales educated peers.
Sally Stevens, executive director of the Sales Education Foundation, noted that companies have an increased focus on partnering with university sales programs.
"With a proven track record for producing top sales talent, the future of university sales education is brighter than ever," Stevens said.
Daniels said she hopes to see the KSUprogram continue to grow as the need for professional salespeople continues to grow.
"Because this program 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."
Four KSU students graduated with their Professional Sales Certificates in spring 2014. Those students were fashion merchandising majors Sharea Elkins and Autumn Richards, business management major Steven Lopez and marketing major Kenneth Rundo.
"Our first certificate graduate had a medical sales job before he graduated in December and has informed me he is doing very well," Daniels said. "I fully expect all four to find professional jobs that will utilize their sales skills in whatever career they choose."