WAYNE, N.J., Nov. 16, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Russ Berrie Institute for Professional Sales (RBI) at William Paterson University's Cotsakos College of Business will host the 9th Annual National Sales Challenge, an intense series of selling competitions and workshops held at the University's campus in Wayne, N.J., from November 18 to 20.
More than 100 college students representing 36 universities from across the country, as well as from Edinburgh Napier University in Scotland, will participate in the competition.
The competition is designed by the University's Russ Berrie Institute for Professional Sales to strengthen students' sales skills and offer them an opportunity to network with business executives from companies around the country who will judge the events and serve as sponsors.
The Russ Berrie Institute for Professional Sales was was recognized in 2015 as one of the top sales programs in the nation by the Sales Education Foundation of Dayton, Ohio. Housed in William Paterson University's Cotsakos College of Business, the Institute was one of the first in the country to offer a bachelor of science degree in professional sales, and represents a unique partnership between the private sector and higher education designed to advance the field of professional sales. An estimated 85 percent of the program's graduates find a job in six months.
This year, a record-breaking 90 executives from 16 sponsor companies will participate in the National Sales Challenge, including: ADP, Becton Dickinson, DHL, First Data, Henry Schein Dental, Laird Plastics, Lennox Industries, Liberty Mutual, McKesson, Michelin, Mohawk Industries, Paycom, Pentax Medical, Russ Berrie Foundation, Tom James, and Waste Management. The competition includes sponsors from technology, healthcare, industrial distribution, retail, engineering, automotive, fashion and infrastructure sectors.
"This is the largest gathering of company executives we have attracted to this event to date," says Siamack Shojai, dean of the Cotsakos College of Business. "Our corporate sponsors are eager to participate because it introduces them to a new generation of up-and-coming sales leaders."
The National Sales Challenge is one of only a few select such competitions in the country. Prior to the event, students compete on their own campuses in order to win the opportunity to compete in the National Sales Challenge at William Paterson.
Competitions include the sales-role play event, which will use a selling situation from sponsor ADP, and a speed-selling competition, which requires students to rotate through tables seated with company executives to pitch themselves for two minutes for a generic job.
Students from all 36 schools will participate in the the speed-sell competition on Wednesday, November 18, and the role play competition on Thursday, November 19. Finalists will compete on Friday, November 20.
In conjunction with the competition, participating students and students from the University's Cotsakos College of Business will attend the RBI Sales Career Boot Camp on November 18, 2015. The camp, which is designed to provide students with information about the everyday realities of the workplace, will focus on the job hunt, job negotiation, the first year on the job, and long-term career planning. Panelists are drawn from ADP, Paycom, Pentax Medical, Michelin, UPS, Laird Plastics, Lennox Industries, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, CBRE, First Data and Liberty Mutual.
Participating schools for 2015 are:
Ball State University
Edinburgh Napier University
Florida State University
High Point University
Illinois State University
James Madison University
Kansas State University
Louisiana State University
Nicholls State University
Penn State Harrisburg
Plymouth State University
Southern New Hampshire University
St. Catherine University
The College of New Jersey
University of Central Oklahoma
University of Dayton
University of Louisiana-Lafayette
University of Texas (Dallas)
University of Toledo
University of Wisconsin (Eau Claire)
University of Wisconsin (Parkside)
University of Wisconsin (White Water)
William Paterson University
Winona State University
The National Sales Challenge will be held in the Russ Berrie Professional Sales Laboratory, a unique computerized multimedia facility that simulates business office environments in the University's 1600 Valley Road building. William Paterson offers a bachelor of science degree in professional sales through the Department of Professional Sales, and provides training programs for sales professionals in the Laboratory.
Follow the Competition:
Twitter: @wpunjbusiness; #wpnsc15
SOURCE William Paterson University