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Minor in healthcare sales offers students a competitive edge

Students ice cupcakes in St. Mary Hall at St. Catherine University on Tuesday, before learning about the healthcare sales minor offered through the University.
Students ice cupcakes in St. Mary Hall at St. Catherine University on Tuesday, before learning about the healthcare sales minor offered through the University.
Melissa Kaelin

By offering a minor in healthcare sales, St. Catherine University can give students in business and healthcare a competitive edge in today's job market.

Students at St. Catherine University were serenaded with cupcakes, conversation and a rare opportunity on Tuesday, as faculty from the School of Business and Leadership introduced them to the healthcare sales minor.

The University’s School of Business and Leadership has been working diligently over the last few years to expand the opportunities that are available to women interested in sales careers.

St. Catherine University is the only college or university in Minnesota that offers a four-year degree in sales, offering separate majors in business-to-business and healthcare sales. Students have the opportunity to earn a certificate in either of these fields, as well as the option to earn a minor in sales. The new healthcare sales minor expands the choices available to students.

“It’s a one of a kind,” said Sally Cook, who is currently enrolled in the healthcare sales minor. “It has opened doors for me.”

Lynn Schleeter, the director of the Center for Sales Innovation, said the University has offered a similar minor in the past, but the healthcare sales minor was restructured last year. Under the new model, students can achieve a healthcare sales minor with fewer additional courses. St. Kate’s Center for Sales Innovation is a nationally recognized sales education and research hub, focused on developing effective and ethical business leaders.

“We have put in place a healthcare sales minor that would be a good option for students who are in a healthcare field already,” said Schleeter. “It’s been approved and it’s open to students right now.”

In order to redesign the minor, the Department of Business Administration worked closely with a number of departments in the Henrietta Schmoll School of Health. Now, students who have taken courses in anatomy and medical terminology will only need to acquire 12 more credits in order to fulfill a health care sales minor.

Schleeter said an education in sales gives professional women a competitive edge over others who are vying for jobs in the healthcare industry. When combined with other majors, the sales background offers students a way to get their foot in the door in large corporations.

“It helps new employees understand a company, then they can move up into marketing or administration,” said Schleeter.

Feb. 23, 2011 by Melissa Kaelin

See also: Business, Healthcare, Students