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Student Professional Development Program

Which fork do I use?

The Student Professional Development Program is a series of four non-credit workshops designed to give you the skills you need to present yourself in a professional manner throughout your career. Workshops are informative, hands-on, and practical.

All College of Business majors are required to complete the workshops; students with minors in the Department of Management and Marketing are required to complete the workshops as well.  Students are strongly encouraged to do so by the end of sophomore year as completion of the workshops is a prerequisite requirement for several upper level BUSCORE courses; the prerequisite will not be waived. The first three SPDP workshops must be completed prior to registering for the Professional Networking Event as this workshop builds on materials covered previously.

For more information, contact Dr. Paula Lentz, Department of Business Communication. For questions, visit us at Schneider Social Science Hall 404 or call Tonya Simpson at 715-836-4320.

The Business Professional

Being a professional is all about building and maintaining good relationships. Some of the topics covered during this interactive workshop include:

  • Discovering the impact etiquette and communication styles can have on your career
  • Learning networking and relationship building strategies.
  • Exploring career planning and internships opportunities.

Workshop fee: $15.00

Professional Etiquette

Professional etiquette focuses on building relationships using good table manners. Whether the situation is an interview, a reception, or other special event, everyone should know how to act in a dining situation. Topics covered at this dinner workshop include:

  • Learning appropriate behavior before, during, and after the meal
  • Mastering the art of conversation
  • Learning how to act in any business dining situation as the host or the guest.

Workshop fee: $30.00 (includes meal). Do you have special dietary needs? Please email Dr. Paula Lentz at at least 3 days prior to the workshop.

Professional Image

Like it or not, employers and clients will form impressions about you based on your dress and behavior. So it is important to learn how to manage your professional image. Other topics covered in this workshop include:

  • Understanding and fitting into the workplace culture.
  • "Dressing for the day"
  • Preparing for the interview. 

Workshop fee: $15.00

Professional Networking Event

It's time to put into practice everything you've learned in the first three workshops.  At this event, you will participate in a question/answer session with a panel of professionals about making the transition from school to work, then enjoy appetizers while you "work the room" at a stand-up networking reception.

Workshop fee: $40.00 (includes appetizer buffet) Do you have special dietary needs? Please email Dr. Paula Lentz at at least 3 days prior to the workshop.

How do I pay for the workshops?

Workshops fees are billed to your student account after the workshop has taken place. Fees can be paid at Blugold Central. You will be charged for the workshop if you register for a workshop but do not attend it OR fail to withdraw by the deadline. For questions about workshop registration history, visit

What do I wear to the workshops?

We strongly encourage you to present yourself in a professional manner at each workshop. Business casual attire is required at the first three workshops, and may include a polo and khakis for men and khakis or dress pants and a nice button up shirt or blouse for women. Business professional attire is preferred for the formal networking event. Workshops involve professionals from the community, so take advantage of the opportunity to make a positive and professional first impression!

Do workshops have to be completed in their entirety?

Yes. Incomplete attendance will result in having to repeat the entire workshop. You will need to re-register for the workshop, pay the workshop fee, and attend the entire session.

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