Cole Weers has always had a passion for cars and the auto industry. Spending time at a dealership as a child thrilled him, as he would read every word of the brochures in the dealership. It was that passion for the auto industry that brought him to the College of Business Administration at University of Nebraska–Lincoln.
A senior management and marketing major from Diller, Nebraska, Weers was able to put his skills and interest to practical use when, thanks in part to the extensive UNL CBA alumni network, he was able to land an internship with Cox Automotive Inc., in Atlanta. For the past two summers, he has been able to intern in dealer sales, and sales and operations for Cox companies Autotrader, Kelly Blue Book and MakeMyDeal.
While interning, he demonstrated techniques he picked up in Assistant Professor of Practice Chad Mardesen’s marketing classes and from his experiences at the UNL Center for Sales Excellence.
“The sales process that we studied in MRKT 257 and 357 helped me prepare for meetings and engagements. I knew from these classes there is more to sales than just selling,” Weers said of his classes in the sales center. “It’s about building rapport and a relationship with the client and understanding their business and their needs so you could present something to them that fits their needs and would help them become successful.”
The Center for Sales Excellence is open to both business and non-business major students. Students earn a certificate in professional selling by completing 13 credit hours of required coursework.
“We try to give students a multi-prong approach to learning about sales. We give them the best theory but also add in the practical application with role play that is so valuable,” Mardesen said. “Students also get to learn by networking with area business leaders which lead to building those networking skills or jobs.”
Weers expects to graduate in the spring of 2017. He plans on returning to CBA in pursuit of an MBA after graduation.
“I would say the biggest thing for me as graduation draws near is that I will be able to go confidently into the workforce knowing I got a world class education from the College of Business Administration at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln,” he said. “Not only that, but I know many have gone before me, which provides me with an alumni network I can connect with and learn from.”