Tuesday, May 31, 2016

COBI Professional Sales School proud of its growing reputation and students’ success at national competition

It has been a remarkable year for the College of Business and Innovation’s Edward H Schmidt School of Professional Sales (ESSPS) and many of its students: the school has hosted its first national invitational sales competition, its students have won/finished well in major sales competitions across the country, received other honors, and one student has even been featured on the cover of a national annual sales publication.

And the year is just half over!

ESSPS’ landmark achievement was the hosting and presentation of the first University of Toledo Invitational Sales Competition (UTISC), with 31 teams from universities across the country participating.

“UTISC is the nation’s first and only national sales competition dedicated exclusively to the non-senior. We know younger students are anxious to shine outside the shadow of seniors, we are confident that they have the talent to compete on a national stage, and this gives companies the opportunity to find their talent first,” noted Deirdre Jones, ESSPS Director. “Juniors now have an internship for summer 2016, and they also have more opportunities about where they want to go post graduation. The UTISC gives the participants time to build relationships.”

“UT has been successfully running freshmen, sophomores, and juniors in our Internal Sales Competition for four years, and the students and businesses just love it. We are confident that our colleagues at other university professional sales programs have talented rising stars chomping at the bit that would excel in this competition and bring added attention to their universities. Furthermore, ESSPS is thrilled to bring tomorrow’s top talent to our corporate sponsors so that they can find the sales talent they need for internships and regular placements.”

Corporate sponsors of the UTISC included 3M, Quicken Loans, Goodyear, Penske, Sonic Foundry, Crown, Hilti, Reynolds and Reynolds, Liberty Mutual Insurance and Therma Tru.

UT’s team took fifth place in its own UTISC event. Additionally, Andrew Brownlee, a freshman, finished in 6th place in the freshman/sophomore division, and Gabriella LeMaster took sixth place in the junior division.
“Our sales students are so strong,” Jones noted, “as further evidenced by the success of ESSPS students at the National Collegiate Sales Competition.”

At the NCSC, the largest and oldest sales role-play competition in existence, UT’s team with Alejandro Vera and Lexi Jarrett claimed first place in the graduate division.  

Furthermore, at the national convention of Pi Sigma Epsilon Professional Business Fraternity (PSE) in Milwaukee, COBI sales student Stephanie Elkins claimed first place in their National Pro-Am Sell-A-Thon as well as Top Salesperson of the Day.

Of course, the ESSPS staff has important activities beyond their successes at competitions.

“During UT’s homecoming weekend this year, we will have a Fall FĂȘte on Friday at Hensville,” Jones said. “It will be a networking social for our existing students, as well as for our alumni to come back and mingle, as well as our ESSPS corporate sponsors and others in the business community. It’s the day of our Internal Sales Competition, and the winners of our competition will be announced at Fall FĂȘte; UT’s ROTC Pershing Rifles team will perform, and we hope to have the UT Marching Band perform as well as having artwork from UT students on display. It will be the night before UT’s homecoming game, which will be against BGSU, so a lot will be going on.”

Jones said tickets can be purchased now by contacting the ESSPS office at 419.530.6133 or email EdwardSchmidtSchool@utoledo.edu  

“Everyone is in sales in some way, shape or form,” Jones said. “Everyone sells, at least internally. Even if someone does not go into the sales profession, it’s guaranteed they will use these skills; you can’t market yourself if you don’t have the skills to get a job, a promotion, or support for your ideas.”

ESSPS is self-funded for its activities and sophisticated technology, such as the broadcast and recording equipment in its sales role play and training rooms, and welcomes contributions for equipment, events, training, technology, programming, competitions and faculty development.

“There is always so much going on here,” Jones said. “We’re already working on next year’s UTISC, which will be held February 23-25, 2017, and have several key sponsors committed to the event.”

“Our Edward Schmidt School of Professional Sales is widely considered to be one of the top university sales programs in the country,” Jones said, “and I believe we are number one. Even the Sales Education Foundation, which includes UT in its 2016 list of Top Universities for Professional Sales Education, featured one of our students, Mark Parker, on the cover of its 2016 Sales Education Annual.”  

“It all benefits our students, elevates the profession and, quite frankly, is invigorating and fun.”

Meet the 2016 COBI Student Pacemakers

Gretchen Buskirk
Gretchen Buskirk is a student in the College’s MBA Program, majoring in Leadership.  She holds a 3.96 grade point average.  Gretchen received her Bachelor of Science from Elon University where she majored in Sports Major with an Athletic Training Concentration and also received a Master of Education from North Carolina State University.  While working towards her MBA, Gretchen has worked full-time as UT’s Associate Head Athletic Trainer.  She has participated in Wreaths Across America, the COBI Advanced Leadership Academy, she has managed the Gatorade Summer S ports Camp Program, has been a case study presenter tat Athletic Trainers Annual Symposiums, is the advisor to the UT Athletic Training Student Club and has numerous publications in scholarly journals.  She is a member of the National Athletic Trainers’ Association, the Great Lakes Athletic Trainer’s Association, the Ohio Athletic Trainers Association and the Mid-American Conference Athletic Trainer’s Association.  Gretchen plans to graduate this May.

Rachel Headley
Rachel Headley is an MSA student with a 3.945 grade point average.  She received her Bachelor of Business Administration from UT where she majored in accounting and marketing.  Rachel has spent this last year as a Graduate Assistant in the College of Business and Innovation’s Student Services.  She has been involved in many organizations such as the Ronald McDonald House, the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, Meet the Firms, OSU Business Summit, COBI Orientation Peer Mentor, and a DECA Volunteer to name a few.  She is the Recruitment Chair and a member of Beta Alpha Psi and has served two stints as a tax intern with Gilmore Jasion Mahler, where she will be employed upon her graduation this May.

Gianfranco Rolando
Gianfranco Rolando is a student with junior standing with a grade point average of 4.0.  He is double majoring in Accounting and Finance and is involved with Beta Alpha Psi, the Institute of Management Accountants, the Student Held Assets Return Portfolio and serves as one of the College’s Searles Ambassadors.  Off campus, Gianfranco has participated in the Ernst &Young Emerging Leaders Program, the PWC Elevate Leadership Program, the Plante Moran Expo Program and the Berg Cup Case Study.  He is a recipient of the Sucher Family Scholarship and has consistently appeared on both the President’s List and the Dean’s List.  He has al received a Regents Award and is a Leadership Conference Grant winner.

Rodrick Perkins
Rodrick Perkins is a senior majoring in Accounting where he holds a 3.898 grade point average.  Rodrick came to UT from Owens Community College where he graduated cum laude with an Associates of Science degree in Business Administration.  At UT, he is involved with Beta Alpha Psi, the Institute of Management Accountants, the Financial Management Association and the International Business Association.   Rodrick is a member of Beta Gamma Sigma, Phi Kappa Phi, the IMA Accounting Honor Society, Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and Kappa Beta Delta Honor Society.

Martha Krause
Martha Krause is a junior with a 3.846 grade point average while majoring in Finance, International Business and minoring in Spanish.  She is a member of Alpha Kappa Psi and has volunteer with the UT Big Event and Bridge Club.  She has been inducted as a member of the Phi Kappa Phi honor society.  While studying abroad in Spain, she was an English and Intercambrio tutor.  She has also served as a volunteer with the Children’s Ministry at her local church.  She is a Tower Scholar Award and has consistently appeared on both the President’s List and the Dean’s List.  Martha maintained a part-time job at the UT Campus Call Center while serving an internship with a local financial planner.  She is currently study in Costa Rica and sends her greetings by way of video.

Patrick Northcraft
Patrick Northcraft is a senior double majoring in Finance and Information Systems.  He holds a 3.961 grade point average.  He has held leadership roles in Alpha Kappa Psi and has been involving in Searles Ambassadors, the Association of Systems Management, has been a Peer Career Assistant and has been inducted into Beta Gamma Sigma and Phi Kappa Phi.  He is a recipient of a Tower Scholar Award, received an Outstanding Professional Achievement from Alpha Kappa Psi and won first place in a College of Communication and the Arts Composition Competition.  Patrick has appeared consistently on the Dean’s List and the President’s List and has recently completed an internship with Marathon Petroleum and has been invited back for a second term. Off-campus Patrick has been involved with Food for Thought, Global Youth Service Day and the Ronald McDonald House and has logged over 300 hours of community service through various organization.

David Headley
David Headley is a senior majoring in both Supply Chain and Information Systems.  He holds a 3.863 grade point average and has held leadership roles in Pi Sigma Epsilon, the Association of Systems Management, is a member of APICS and a Searles Ambassador.  David is a recipient of the UT Blue and Gold Scholarship, the UT Legacy Award Scholarship, the UT Sibling Award Scholarship, the Charles Sullivan Scholarship, the APICS Scholarship, the GBEX, LLC Supply Chain Scholarship, the John and Marilyn Toner Scholarship, the Edon Farmers Co-op and FFA Scholarships.  In the community, David has participated in Relay for Life been a Huntington Center Volunteer and a volunteer at the Sunshine Home.  David appears frequently on the Dean’s List and the President’s List.  He is currently serving his second internship at Owens-Illinois.

Madeline Jarrett
Madeline Jarrett is a senior with a 3.877 grade point average, majoring in Supply Chain Management.  She is a member of the UT Women’s track and field team, the fellowship of Christian athletes and APICS.  She is a recipient of the Sullivan Scholarships, an Honors Award and the Women’s Track and Field Scholarship.  She was a member of the Klar Leadership Academy where she participated in the Feed my Starving project.  She was a sales/marketing intern at Jarrett Logistics Systems. She has appeared on both the President’s List and the Dean’s List.  She is not here tonight due to the fact that she is competing in a Track/Field event and sends her remarks via video. (VIDEO)

Kayla Cepo
Kayla Cepo is a junior, majoring in Human Resource Management.  She holds a 3.826 grade point average.  She has been a U-8 soccer head coach and was a player in co-ed Rec Soccer.  Kayla is currently serving as an administrative intern at Tenneco.  She is a recipient of the Hatch Scholarship, the UT Achievement Award, the Thrift Shop Scholarship and has appeared frequently on the Dean’s List.

Karee Kunkel
Karee Kunkel is a senior majoring in Human Resource Management with a 3.898 grade point average.  She is involved with Alpha Xi Delta, the Society for Human Resource Management, Liftoff UT, Student Wellness Awareness Team, the Bridge, UT and the Relay for Life.  She has received a Rocket Scholar Award, the Sullivan Scholarship, a Gutteridge Scholarship and a Rudduck Management Scholarship.  She has represented the College of Business at the 2016 SHRM Case study competition and has served internships at Owens Corning, The Andersons and National Galvanizing.  Karee is in involved in the community with the JA Bowl-a-Thon, the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, EPIC Toledo Summer in the City, Red Cross Blood Drives and is a member of the National Society for Human Resource Management.

Stephanie Elkins
Stephanie Elkins is a junior majoring in both professional sales and organizational leadership.  She has held leaderships in Pi Beta Phi, Pi Sigma Epsilon, Lambda Sigma Honor Society, the UT Panhellenic Council and is a Presidential Ambassador, a scholarship recipient and member of the Levis Leadership Program, Mortar Board Senior Honor Society, and the Order of Omega Greek Honor Society.  She is also a recipient of the Charles Sullivan Scholarship, the Edward H. Schmidt School of Professional Sales Scholarship, the COBI Departmental Scholarship, and a Rocket Scholarship.  She has appeared frequently on both the President’s List and the Dean’s List.  Stephanie has competed in various sales competition and received three 1st place awards.  She is currently a marketing intern for the UT Center for Family and Privately-Held Business, has served an internship at Quicken Loans and Family of Companies and in summer will be a Sales Intern with Owens Corning and then serve an internship in the fall with Marathon Petroleum Corporation.  She is, off-campus, involved with Ohio DECA, the Toledo Area Alumnae Panhellenic Association, Genoa Baptist Church, Life Remodeled Detroit.

Megan Gaysunas
Megan Gaysunas is a senior with a 3.85 grade point average and double majoring in Marketing and Finance.  She is a member of the Varsity Track and Cross-Country team, participated in the inaugural Klar Leadership Academy, is a member of the USAC Alumni Association, the Student Management Portfolio and a COBI Honors student.  She has studied abroad in Torino, Italy and has been a volunteer at Wildwood and the Glass City Marathon.  She has been on the MAC Honor Ro ll, an Academic All-Mac and a Scholar Baller.  She has received a Commissioner’s Award for excelling academically while participating in college athletics.  She is currently a Treasurer/CFO intern with the Otsego Local School District and has previously served an internship with Betco Corporation.  She will graduate this May magna cum laude.

Jacob Pawelczyk
Jacob Pawelczyk holds a 3.859 grade point average and is double majoring in Professional Sales and Information Systems.  On campus, he is involved with Pi Sigma Epsilon, Blue Key Honor Society, Mortar Board National Honor Society, is a President Ambassador, a member of the Order of Omega Greek Honorary, the Lambda Sigma National Honor Society, the National Residence Hall Honorary and the Parks Tower Hall Council.  He is also a member and house manager of the social fraternity Sigma Phi Epsilon.  He has appeared numerous times on both the President’s List and the Dean’s List, finished first place in both the Quicken Loans Sales Competition and the Top Management Team.  He is a recipient of the Rocket Scholarship, Thomson  Reuters Sales Scholarship, Robert Falter Fund Scholarship, Level 3 Sales Scholarship, Heidtman Steel Products Sales Professional scholarship, Around Campus Group Scholarship for B2B Sales, Balanced Man Scholarship, the Delta Airlines Award for Excellence and the Tim Allison Memorial Scholarship.  In2014 he was named the Greek New Member of the Year.

Donna Provolish
Donna Provolish was chosen by the Department of Applied Organizational Technology as their Student Pacemaker.  She carries a grade point average of 4.0 and is specializing in the field of business management technology.  She is a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars and the Golden Key Honor Society.  She is involved with the Food Pantry and APICS.  While going to school, Donna works full time as a commodities manager for Therma-Tru Corporation.