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SFU Business students put academic lessons into practice

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Contact
Melanie Lawrence, SFU Business student, 604.444.4070; mlawrenc@sfu.ca


November 3, 2004
This fall at Simon Fraser University, students are confronting an Apprentice-size challenge on a student-size budget. SFU and General Motors of Canada (GMCL) are collaborating to challenge students to create a marketing campaign. The aim is to raise awareness and interest in the Chevrolet Aveo while giving students a real-life experience. The twist is that they have only two months and $3,200 dollars to do the job.

The General Motors Marketing Internship (GMMI) provides SFU marketing students with a hands-on opportunity in a business environment and allows them to apply academic lessons to real client needs in order to create valuable marketing results.

Faculty supervisors, GMCL representatives, and the program administrator, EdVenture Partners, are overseeing the project. Students will research, communicate, and collaborate to draw fellow university students to an event created especially for them on November 9th, from 10am - 4pm at SFU's Burnaby campus. The event will allow students to become aware of what the Aveo has to offer and will also involve them in their peers' success.

Many academic institutions in the US have already incorporated the GMMI into their curriculum. SFU is one of the first Canadian universities to take advantage of the internship. SFU faculty are using the program to integrate a unique combination of academic and business experience into a classroom setting.

Cathy Ace, the program's course leader at SFU, is already seeing rewards. “The business world needs graduates who can hit the ground running. Immediately, I can see that facing a real problem with a real budget and a tight deadline has developed business skills these students will be able to use in the workplace every day.”

“Students are focused on time management, objective setting, functional communication within a group, and creative ways of communicating with a defined target audience,” Ace adds. “Whatever path a student might choose beyond graduation, these skills will prove valuable to a prospective employer.”

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Digital photos available upon request.