Consulting Practicum (BUS 488)

Students considering the 3-hour consulting practicum experience (BUS 488) should review the information provided herein and consult their faculty academic adviser. Students, under the supervision of a faculty mentor, will work collaboratively in a consulting team responsible for helping a client organization solve a particular problem in the areas of marketing, finance, productions, human resource, and/or entrepreneurship, among others. Applying concepts, theories, and best practices learned in previous coursework, students will analyze and evaluate quantitative/qualitative data in a problem context for the purposes of preparing a deliverable solution that meets the specific needs of the client. The organizations will vary in size and scope, and may include for-profit, non-profit, and public sector governmental entities.

Prerequisites: a minimum of 30 required credit hours in the Business major (courses may be from BUS, ACCT, and/or ECON); Senior standing with 3.00 major GPA; and permission of the instructor. Every year.

Course Description

MGMT 488 is designed to provide the student with an immersion into understanding and addressing an organizational or market-based problem or opportunity facing a client.  The client may be a non-for-profit or for-profit organization, government or private business entity, or entrepreneurial venture.  The course is designed to enhance students’ ability to engage in project management and small teams across both academic and practitioner/ professional domains.  Students will work on teams engaged in a variety of activities, including but not limited to: resolving organizational problems, exploring market opportunities, conducting research, analyzing data, creative problem solving, and designing deliverables such as strategic plans, market analyses, product prototypes, etc.  The nature of the project and the deliverables will depend on the interactions and agreements among the faculty, client(s) and students.

Expectations for Students

In addition to the requirements listed in the course catalogue, students will be expected to spend approximately one hour of every three course hours on the client site and/or engaging in consulting-related work off campus.  The student may need to access their own transportation, carpool with other students, or utilize public transportation to and from the client site and related venues.  Students are expected to display exemplary professional behavior and a high level of teamwork throughout the semester.

Expectations for Clients

Clients are expected to act respectfully and professionally with faculty and students, communicate regularly with faculty and/or student contacts, participate in final student presentations, provide candid and timely feedback to faculty and students regarding expectations, and provide clear guidance regarding desired outcomes, processes, behaviors and other expectations and requirements.

Expectations for Faculty

Individual faculty will collaborate with identified interested client and complete a memorandum of understanding during the semester before BUS488 is offered.  The particular project, desired deliverables and client depends in part on the strengths and interests of the faculty member, as well as the needs and opportunities of the client.

Contact Information

Dr. Susan Clark
128 Delany Hall