The creation and execution of this project began by analyzing the honors project specifications, to design a project that met the Honors College criteria. To meet these criteria, a market research study was conducted to assist the College of Business’s Business Career Accelerator management in understanding the student market of the College of Business. In addition, the study’s goal is to make recommendations utilizing marketing and education frameworks to maintain and increase student usage of the center. The project was executed using traditional market research frameworks, which required conducting in-depth interviews of College of Business students to determine student attitudes and behaviors towards professional development and usage of the Business Career Accelerator. The College of Business student market was then segmented based on typical usage behaviors. A ‘validity check’ was also conducted with management of the Business Career Accelerator, which compared management’s understanding of student attitudes and behaviors with the student responses received from the in-depth interviews. After conducting the in-depth interviews, several barriers to student participation in the Business Career Accelerator were identified. These barriers were identified and analyzedby applying relevant marketing and education frameworks identified by interviewing College of Education faculty and industry professionals at Root Inc., a center which focuses on implementing strategic change in organizations.
Following marketing and education methods, tentative recommendations were made based on the education frameworks, to address the barriers to student participation that were identified in the qualitative interviews. Feedback was then sought on these recommendations, by conducting a focus group with a group of senior level College of Business students. The focus group sought student feedback that would help to adapt or further refine these career development suggestions. Following the focus group, the career development suggestions were adapted to reflect student input. Finally, the results of this study were presented to a market research course of approximately fifty students. Students attending the presentation provided more feedback on the recommendations prior to the development of this report, and its presentation to the Honors College and Business Career Accelerator’s management for implementation.
Sales and Services Marketing
Phillip A. Titus, Ph.D.
First Advisor Department
DJ Kern-Blystone, Ed.S.
Second Advisor Department
Vincent, Madison, "College of Business, Business Career Accelerator, Qualitative Research Study on Student Involvement in Professional Development Activities" (2019). Honors Projects. 547.