The UF Sales Minor helps fulfill key elements of the strategic vision of the College and University by strengthening our curriculum, preparing and managing the expectations of our graduates, and generating increased interest from recruiters and sponsors. The primary goal is to augment student’s education with the knowledge and skills necessary to be top-notch consultative sellers to make them more competitive and satisfied post-graduation.
Students graduating with a sales minor should demonstrate a knowledge of the industry. Currently, we have a growing number of opportunities for students each year, with some companies rapidly expanding. Internships must be vetted for proper mentoring and growth. The purpose of this document is to outline the components of an acceptable Sales Internship in order to satisfy the intent of its inclusion in the Sales Minor curriculum requirements.
Ideal Internship Sponsoring Companies
The ideal sponsoring company for our Internship program should meet all or a large portion of the following criteria:
- An established company with more than 3 years of successful operations.
- A workforce consisting of at least 50 employees and a dedicated sales organization.
- A salesforce focused on outbound sales rather than one utilizing inbound sales requests, online-only sales initiation or walk-in business.
- A dedicated sales management function with established training and development programs for both interns and newly-hired sales professionals.
- A clear focus on quality human resource management techniques, specifically excluding a “churn and burn” style of using interns as temporary labor.
Acceptable Internship Experiences
To satisfy the Sales Internship requirements of the UF Sales Minor, the student must have spent at least 8 consecutive weeks of full-time equivalent service in an outbound sales functional area. The student must have been exposed to the full range of tasks associated with the operation of a successful sales organization and immersed in a major functional sales area. This would include all or a major portion of the following functions:
- Creating sales strategies as a part of a sales team.
- Assisting with the generation of sales leads.
- Researching potential prospective customers.
- Assisting with the preparation of sales presentations or supporting documentation.
- Supporting and actively assisting experienced sales professionals with the completion of their daily tasks.
- Attending sales meetings or sales calls along with experienced sales staff.
- Preparing sales reports, sales forecasts or competitive sales analysis.
- Attending continuing sales education classes along with experienced sales staff.
- Anything else that provides total immersion in a face-to-face or B2B sales role.
Unacceptable Internship Experiences
The following list provides examples of internships that do not satisfy the requirement:
- Purely administrative or clerical sales support.
- Online, call-in or click-and-buy sales processes.
- Working in a call center primarily designed to answer questions or respond to inbound requests.
- Personal consumer goods selling such as retail “walk-in” business or door-to-door sales.
- Any sales activity that involves high quotas of cold-calling using a memorized phone script, standardized email or social media campaign as the main sales process.
Prior to accepting an internship position, the student should submit the Sales Internship Proposal to ensure compliance with the above criteria. Either Dr. Dennis DiPasquale or Dr. Steven Tufts will become the Supervising Faculty for that student’s internship. The proposal should include the company name, location, sales supervisor, human resources contact and relevant phone numbers and email addresses along with a 2-3 paragraph description of the internship assignment. Include a job description provided by the company.
At the midpoint of the internship, a brief email should be submitted to the Supervising Faculty Member providing an update on progress.
Upon completing the internship, the student should submit the Sales Internship Completion form outlining specific duties performed, key activities, project completion, team participation and other sales immersion of any kind. Also include the names and contact information of the supervisors if they have changed during the internship.
The Supervising Faculty Member will review the documentation, confirm all information and approve or disapprove the internship’s qualification for satisfying the criteria. The faculty member may request additional information or to meet with the student, especially if the firm is not a whitelisted partner or sponsor listed below:
- AXA Advisors / Equitable
- Bank of England
- E&J Gallo
- Keller Williams
- Pepsico Family of Brands
- Proctor & Gamble
- Signature Consultants
- Cox Business Services
While we’ve allowed internships provisionally due to a tight market in 2020 to 2021, we do not find that internship to be robust and embedded sufficiently. Students are encouraged to maintain constant communication with their supervising faculty.
Internships from before Spring 2020 will require the completion form only.