Earlier this month, students from Assistant Professor Jennifer Golden’s Principles of Marketing honors class filled up gas tanks for customers at three different locations around Abilene. The purpose of the project was to research the question of whether service makes a difference in a commodity driven marketplace, specifically the gas industry. The students collected the research and interacted with consumers at the gas station, focusing on selling techniques and customer service. Using the Texaco Five-Star Service model which includes checking tire pressure, pumping gasoline, washing windows, and friendly service, students conducted a survey to analyze whether or not genuine customer service affects consumer attitudes. After conducting the experiment, Mandy Stratton, a sophomore marketing major, says, “We learned that many people are so focused on quickly getting things done that they have lost interest in the face-to-face interactions and service.” Many customers seemed to be confused by others wanting to offer them full customer service when they are so used to filling up their own tanks. Overall, the marketing survey allowed students to see how customer service goes hand in hand with selling a product or service.
“In this project, I learned how crucial it is to be kind and respectful to everyone you meet, because you never know who you could run into. Our group ended up running into First Financial Bank’s CEO, president, and chairman,” states Tracy Richardson.
Allie Rostron, a senior marketing major from Llano, had the opportunity to intern with Dell last summer in Austin. She worked as an undergrad senior analyst within the finance department but mainly worked on projects heavily rooted in marketing and communications. One of her projects included working with people from around the globe, including Ireland, Malaysia, China, and Brazil. The aim of the project was to completely revamp all of the recruiting for the CFO’s development programs, ranging from the Finance Internship Program, the Finance and Accounting Development Programs, and the Finance Rotation Program. She also worked with a team to produce a video that would be cued by Michael Dell at his global All Hands on Deck Meeting. This project included interviewing 40 plus employees asking questions regarding Dell’s future, Dell’s innovation, and how going private would affect Dell’s interaction with customers. Allie also worked with Dell’s internal blog, One Dell Way. She performed research on Big Data, Big Analytics, the evolving workforce, and virtual desktop infrastructure.
Allie landed the internship by researching and emailing contacts in the professional marketplace. She asked for advice and feedback about her resume and the interviewing process and recommendations regarding fields and companies to look for. Her resume was forwarded to various employees within Dell and eventually to the hiring team. She advises students seeking internships to start early! If students are wanting to work in a larger company, she suggests that they start doing research now and contacting people to gain knowledge through the entire process. Secondly, she highly believes in the power of networking and that by using contacts made through networking, students are using a tool that is at everyone’s disposal.
Allie will begin working for Dell after she graduates in May. Allie is a great example of someone who used the power of networking and seeking advice from other professionals to land an incredible internship opportunity. If you are searching for an internship or job, schedule an appointment with Samantha Matta in the COBA Connections office. Congratulations Allie and good luck with your new position at Dell!
“Never underestimate the power of networking. Networking is not working the system but is utilizing a tool that is open to your disposal. You never know what can come from emailing someone and asking them advice.”
This Fall Break, a group of 23 students along with professors Dr. Jonathan Stewart, Dr. Joyce Haley, COBA Executive in Residence David Swearingen, and ACU Chief Marketing Officer Jason Groves headed north to the single most competitive work environment in the country-New York City. While in New York, the group was able to visit Wall Street and meet with executives from companies like Johnson & Johnson, Magnet Media, Dentsu American, CNN and the NBA. Brandon Baker, a ’98 ACU graduate, hosted the group as they toured the New York Stock Exchange. Brandon now serves as the organization’s vice president of information technology. Seeing ACU alumni like Brandon succeed in such a competitive business environment shows how competitive ACU students are against graduates from larger elite schools, such as Harvard and Yale. ACU students are able to infuse faith into their work, offering a set of ethics and values to the marketplace. Swearingen states, “If there’s anything business needs more of, it is Christians who bring their ethics and values into the marketplace. That’s what ACU students and grads do.”
“Being in NYC was so empowering! There are opportunities everywhere you look. We have discussed businesses in a classroom setting, but actually meeting business CEOs and leaders gave us a whole new perspective of how companies operate,” states Gentry McMath, junior accounting major.
Amanda Clary, Shannon Ball, Sarah Hailey, Whitney Stevens, Jaci Isham, Gentry McMath, Natalie Goin, Allie Rostron, Savannah Smith, Amy Sloan and Meghan Eager on the NYC fall break trip.