Twenty-three members of The University of Toledo Chapter of Pi Sigma Epsilon (PSE), the professional sales and marketing fraternity, participated in the PSE National Conference in Indianapolis in March.They came home with top finishes in some of the conference’s key competitions.
In the University Directories Marketing Challenge, the UT chapter claimed second place; in the ADP Marketing Challenge, Jack Powers was on the team that took the first-place prize; and in the National Pro-Am Sales Competition, Brittany Bodi finished in first place among the 88 students entered in that contest.
“The best part of the conference was the competitions,” said Matt Devenport, president of the UT Pi Sigma Epsilon Chapter. “There was a lot of emotion, a real close bond among the PSE members. We came together, and the bonding experience was different than it was in the classroom. We become more motivated to do better, and our chemistry builds success throughout the chapter.
“To prepare for the conference, our chapter held organizational meetings every week to strategize and build a plan about how we would compete. We practiced every week and met with our professors in the Edward H. Schmidt School of Professional Sales,” Devenport said. “There are competitions to select chapters to recognition levels of gold, silver and amethyst, as well as competitions that reflect everything the chapter does throughout the year. We were one of the finalists for the silver level, and even though we did not win that particular award, being recognized as a chapter finalist was an accomplishment.”
UT chapter adviser Dr. Michael Mallin, associate professor of marketing, said, “The weeklong conference provides student members extensive opportunities to learn. There are various events at the conference, including those with chapter officers focusing on marketing and sales training, leadership skill development, professional networking practice, and activities to enhance selling skills.”
“PSE is important and beneficial because it promotes professionalism, exposes the students to recruitment and networking opportunities, and helps them with professional development. It helps members develop good communications skills, to get a job … and you make a lot of friends,” Mallin added.
“The role of the faculty is to be available for our students and to be positive, but the students did the work themselves,” Mallin explained. “Our chapter members did a good job, and I give a lot of credit to Matt for motivating them and leading the team, which positively reflects on the chapter, our Edward H. Schmidt School of Professional Sales, the College of Business and Innovation, and The University of Toledo.”
The chapter paid for their trip through a variety of fundraisers and received additional support from the Edward H. Schmidt School of Professional Sales.
“PSE wants to thank the Edward H. Schmidt School of Professional Sales and The University of Toledo for giving us the opportunity to attend the 2012 PSE National Convention in Indianapolis,” said Devenport, now in his second term as chapter president. “We look to only improve on the success of our chapter in the years to come.”