A group of generous North Carolina-based State Farm agents is making a real difference in the lives of NC State students. By coming together to establish the new Career Development Center Sales Lab, they’re creating opportunities and providing students with access to the resources needed to gain practical, real-world experience.
State Farm and individual State Farm agents contributed $95,000.00 to support the creation of the sales lab. The funds were used to develop and completely outfit the new sales lab, a multifunctional space equipped with high definition cameras, computers, software applications, and interior furnishings which simulate a real-world office setting.
The benefits of the technology are seemingly limitless and will serve students, faculty, and employers. For marketing faculty, the space will serve as an extension of the classroom environment, introducing students to sales-based scenarios that are difficult to produce in class. The sales lab will also be an invaluable resource for State Farm agents as they coach students in their preparation for events like the National Collegiate Sales Competition.
Students will be better able to improve their interview and conversational skills, by participating in and recording mock interview sessions. The lab’s technology will enable them to review, annotate, and self-critique these sessions, learning how to improve their communication skills and correct potentially distracting speaking habits. For those pursuing sales-based positions, recorded mock sales calls can be shared with potential employers as a supplement to the traditional resume.
Most employers will readily agree that a demonstrated ability to think critically and solve complex problems is of even greater importance than a candidate’s undergraduate major or GPA. Early access to the opportunities that help students grow these skills are a major contributing factor in why NC State students are consistently highly recruited after graduation. The new sales lab will be instrumental in providing these experiences.
State Farm has, thus far, created 35 similar labs at colleges and universities across the country. NC State’s is the first to boast the added-value benefit of being housed within a formal career development center.
The addition of the Career Development Center Sales Lab to NC State’s campus resources poises the university to be on-par with the technology seen in universities and colleges with top-tier sales and marketing programs.
As a company that has built its name on the importance of being a good neighbor, State Farm knows the value of a strong community. Their generous gift is a true investment in NC State students and their ability to impact and create lasting change within the greater community.
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