Experiential Education Community Partners
Experiential Education Community Partners are critical links connecting the chain of learning for students. Students gain practical experience applying the skills and knowledge from their course content to their projects. The students do not just study a real-world problem put forward by our partners, they provide strategies and recommendations to solve these challenges.
Experiential Education in the Goodman School of Business at Brock is “project based”. Students work as “consultants” to their community partner. This is not a “co-op” or “placement” as in the traditional experiential learning models. Students rarely work on site at the organization but rather meet with a representative of the organization and gather the information they need to produce a solution to the challenge. There are agreed upon deliverables and timelines for each project.
There is no fee to become an experiential community partner as students receive course credit for their work. However, for community partners that are remote from campus, a willingness on the part of the partner’s representative to travel to campus to meet with the team improves the chances that a project will be selected. Typical projects will have 2-3 on campus visits.
The most important commitment that the partner organization has to make is around flexibility and promptness. These experiential projects are all linked to courses that generally take place over 3 months and these projects are typically worth 20% -40% of the student’s overall course mark. This is a very short time frame given the projects usually start after the students have covered some of the theory in class.
Timeliness for information transfer is critical to project success. As the students work in teams and have varied schedules to plan around we ask that community partners be very flexible about meeting times. Timely communication is necessary given the tight timelines student teams have to complete the project.
Most projects use the following process outline:
- During an initial meeting, goals and timelines are set up
- Exchanges of information are usually continued by email
- A meeting is set for the half way point to ensure the project is on track
- A final presentation is made either in the classroom or at the partner organization
- Projects are largely delivered in an electronic format to community partners at the end of the term
- Strategic Planning – Stagnation, expansion, next steps for your business.
- Human Resources – Employee motivation, internal communication, recruitment, HR forecasting, HR strategies, addressing burnout & stress, COVID policies/WFH.
- Business Ethics – Strategies for solving ethical dilemmas, code of conduct/ethics, CSR initiatives.
- Sales Management – Sales forecasting, analyzing past sales, sales strategies, analytics, marketing strategies.
- Information Systems – Client tracking databases, inventory systems, CRM, learning management.
- Mobile App Development – Web development, simple mobile app.
- Entrepreneurship – Business plans, feasibility studies.
- Marketing – Marketing plans, consumer purchasing strategies, marketing communications.