By Jordan Beach
The curriculum in Dr. Charles Campbell’s courses incorporates networking without leaving the classroom, as he connects with community leaders to offers his students the chance to consult for real businesses.
Many professors in Reinhardt’s McCamish School of Business & Sport Studies offers students a wealth of knowledge from their own careers, which supplements their textbook knowledge. As Assistant Professor of Marketing, Campbell takes his courses to the next level by pulling in business leaders from the local community that work with students to develop a variety of skills needed in the business field.
“The idea is to share with the students how your organization currently employs the topics we cover during the course; and for the students to then take that data and prepare recommended ‘plans of action’ for your organization - based on what they learn from their academic materials, similar to a professional consulting process.”
This semester, students from Campbell’s Business Communications, Marketing and Personal Selling courses worked with local business professionals to apply their knowledge to a presentation that offered consultation on researched business improvements.
DD Lee worked with marketing students to enhance her business, Love’s Atlas, and with Business Communications students to discuss changes at Skyline Properties, where she is the owner and broker. She said the business students she worked alongside were “a pleasure to teach, work with and learn from.”
“In the class, they are engaged and curious and offer a lot of great perspectives. I see a lot of potential in these young men and women. As a matter of fact, Skyline might be gaining an intern or two out of the class,” said Lee.
Lee created Love’s Atlas, an international dating site, to combat cultural hindrances between men and women in Chinese society. Campbell’s marketing students researched ways to enhance her business and presented their ideas in a virtual One Million Cups meeting.
“The group that I'm working with for Love's Atlas are a tremendous group of young women who are motivated and compassionate. Even in the midst of COVID-19 and everything being canceled, they still insisted on helping me with the project for Love's Atlas because they believed in the vision to help women on the other side of the world.”
Robin Wright, a mortgage loan originator with Silverton Mortgage, found his time with Campbell’s Personal Selling students to be enjoyable.
“They have provided great insight and interesting perspective during our class sessions,” Wright said. “I found the students to be very engaged.”
Campbell incorporates these opportunities into his curriculum to aid in his student’s development of a variety of enhanced soft skills and professional experience to include on their resume. It’s a form of experiential learning that expands their network. At the same time, the connections formed offer the community a number of benefits as well.
“The benefits to an organization include comprehensive individual and team 'consultative plans of action,’ possible future interns and/or part-time or full-time employees, and the knowledge that you have made a significant difference in the lives of future entrepreneurs and business leaders,” said Campbell.
The partnership between Reinhardt University and the community, such as ones formed through Rotary Clubs and networking groups like YPOW, gives students the opportunity to work with successful entrepreneurs and gain invaluable experience before they enter the working world after graduation.
“Rotary’s mission is Service Above Self, and I am proud to see fellow Towne Lake Rotarians provide service by investing in the education of Reinhardt University business students,” said Erika Neldner, director of marketing & communications for Reinhardt University and president of the Rotary Club of Towne Lake. “By working with Dr. Campbell’s classes, both DD and Robin are allowing students to gain experience working with real-world businesses instead of just classroom scenarios. They are also showing our Reinhardt students the importance of networking and collaboration.”
Campbell’s business courses are just one example of the possibilities that come from Reinhardt University working together with the community and its leaders.