Howard University School of Business Partners with Vanguard to Launch Sales Fellowship Program

Cecilia Nysing

WASHINGTON – The Howard University School of Business is pleased to announce a new partnership with Vanguard, one of the world’s largest asset managers, to establish the Howard Sales Management Fellowship program. The program will create a sustainable pipeline of Howard students into sales careers through course development, faculty externships, workshops, student internships and job placement.

“I am very pleased that Vanguard has chosen to expand its partnership with the School of Business to create a diverse pipeline of students who are both eager and prepared to enter careers in sales,” said School of Business Dean Anthony Wilbon, Ph.D. “This important program will allow our faculty to build on their expertise and provides students with additional course offerings as well as opportunities to gain exposure to a wide variety of sales careers.”  

The program is slated to begin in the Fall 2021 semester. Fellows will take two courses, one introductory and one advanced, in sales management. School of Business juniors and seniors interested in pursuing careers in sales will be eligible to take advantage of the courses as well as a variety of workshops led by Vanguard executives and subject matter experts. Melvin Washington, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Department of Marketing, will lead the courses in sales. Washington was the first faculty member to participate in the faculty externship with Vanguard as part of the program. This component of the program allows Howard faculty to gain industry insights that will inform the development of Howard’s sales curriculum.

“Having the opportunity to participate in a month-long externship with Vanguard over the Summer allowed me to prepare for the start of our sales management fellowship this Fall,” said Washington. “The externship gave me an opportunity to upskill and gain critical insider perspective on the industry, which I can now translate to our students and ensure that they have the skills they need to be competitive when they enter the job market.”

Washington says there’s a need to dispel outdated myths and misconceptions that discourage students from pursuing sales careers. Efua Obeng, Ph.D., professor of marketing, says this new program will help to dispel those myths while also tackling the lack of diversity in sales.

“Like many areas, Black professionals are underrepresented in sales,” said Obeng. “With this new program, we get to deal with the lack of diversity by creating a pipeline into those careers, but we also address a broader gap in the job market because many marketing careers start in sales. Through our partnership with Vanguard, we will be better equipped to prepare our students for early careers.”

“Diversity, equity and inclusion are vital to Vanguard’s continued leadership in the asset management industry, and we are committed to identifying and developing high-achieving talent from underrepresented communities as part of this imperative,” said Crystal Hardie Langston, Vanguard chief diversity officer. “Joining forces with Howard University will enable Vanguard to reach some of the nation’s most promising students and provide them with the skills, resources and real-life experience necessary to succeed in the competitive and growing financial services field.”

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About Howard University

Founded in 1867, Howard University is a private, research university that is comprised of 13 schools and colleges. Students pursue more than 140 programs of study leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University operates with a commitment to Excellence in Truth and Service and has produced one Schwarzman Scholar, three Marshall Scholars, four Rhodes Scholars, 12 Truman Scholars, 25 Pickering Fellows and more than 165 Fulbright recipients. Howard also produces more on-campus African-American Ph.D. recipients than any other university in the United States. For more information on Howard University, visit www.howard.edu.

Media Contact: Misha Cornelius, [email protected]

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