You'll have the chance for hands-on learning as you face actual business challenges in lab courses.
- Private Equity/Venture Capital Lab - You'll intern 15 to 20 hours a week on projects ranging from evaluating new market/business opportunities to specific issues and opportunities for portfolio companies. The classroom component features guest lecturers from private equity and venture capital companies. Companies that have participated several times in the lab include Sterling Partners, Dunrath, Duchossois, OCA Ventures, Lake Capital, Essex Woodlands, Roundtable, WHI, Seneca Partners, Arch Development, and Prism Capital.
- Real Estate Lab - Selected students from the business schools of Chicago and Northwestern universities will compete in the Zell | Booth-Kellogg Real Estate Challenge. Historically, the Challenge topic has been a redevelopment proposal (often for a site owned by the City of Chicago); past sites have included properties located in areas such as: “Lakeside” (the former US Steel site), the proposed Olympic Village, the south loop, the "six corners," Bronzeville and the near West Side. These sites have lent themselves to a variety of proposed residential, retail and office uses. Each team - usually six to eight students (with a mix of full- and part-time students) - utilizes the spring quarter to hone their proposal and their presentation. Resources for these activities include interested faculty members as well as local practitioners familiar with various aspects (design, construction, leasing, financing, etc.) of the proposed project. The proposals are ultimately evaluated by a panel of external judges - one of whom is typically a City representative. These students typically find the experiential nature of the project to be intellectually rewarding as well as quite helpful when interviewing with prospective employers.
We also have courses like Developing New Products and Services that also provide experiential learning opportunities. These courses incorporate assignments from outside companies that allow you to put your classroom learning into practice.
- Marketing Research - This course will provide you with a toolkit of market research approaches and techniques to help them define key research questions that underlie strategic marketing decisions. You will collect and analyze data and develop the strategic implications of the research findings. View a sampling of past sponsors. Under faculty supervision, you will work with their client sponsor on a project and present their final analysis to management. Past projects have included:
- Estimating market potential
- Segmenting the market to identify target customers
- Improving advertising and pricing policies
- Designing and positioning new products
- Identifying opportunities and obstacles in current market performance
- Uncovering consumer perceptions and attitudes toward a brand relative to competitors
- Understanding consumer experiences with a product, service, or inside a facility
- Uncovering the underlying motivations and unmet needs for new products
- Understanding the drivers of brand loyalty and advocacy
- Developing New Products - The primary purpose of this course is to provide marketers with an in-depth understanding of current best practices in new product development. Topics covered include: stage-gate new product processes, new product strategy, platform strategy, opportunity identification, perceptual mapping, market research techniques for uncovering customer needs, idea generation and screening, writing new product concept statements, concept optimization, new product forecasting methods (including innovation diffusion models and simulated test markets), brand extendibility, and new product launch plans.
This course will cover consumer and business-to-business products and services (with an emphasis on consumer products). This course will also highlight the different roles and functions required for effective new product development. A series of group projects enables students to apply these tools.