Key initiatives for the School of Business and Professional Studies are grounded in the school’s values of ethics, leadership and innovation. They include:
Women in sales
When Fortune 500 company executives wanted to increase the number of women in their companies’ sales forces, they turned to St. Catherine to develop an undergraduate curriculum to address their needs. We are the only institution in Minnesota to offer a bachelor's degree in sales, and we stand out as the only college or university in the nation addressing education in sales from a women's perspective.
St. Catherine's Center for Sales Innovation has been the leading force behind much of this work. Since 1986, major corporations have turned to the Center to develop research projects and adapt both undergraduate curriculum and professional development programs to address rapidly changing business environments. The Center's Emerging Sales Leaders program brings together a cohort of women that works together one evening per month for nine months to enhance leadership skills and expand networks. Sales leaders and business executives come together once a month for topical discussions through the Center's Sales Executive Forum.
Women in corporate leadership
Sixteen percent of Minnesota’s 100 largest publicly held companies have no women corporate directors or executive officers, according to The 2009 Minnesota Census: Women in Corporate Leadership. This groundbreaking research was conducted by two professors in St. Catherine’s Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership (MAOL) program. This annual research project, conducted by professors Rebecca Hawthorne and Joann Bangs, is part of a national body of work compiled by the InterOrganization Network (ION), which includes research from contributors across the country.
Graduate students in the organizational leadership program support Hawthorne and Bangs as research assistants, a valuable academic experience as well as an opportunity to be featured on a national level. The press coverage and public review of the The 2009 Minnesota Census: Women in Corporate Leadership has raised the visibility and reputation of the MAOL program and drawn attention to the reality that women are still largely shut out from top levels of business leadership.