New program aims to instill professional excellence among undergraduates

Lauren Cunningham, communications director

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas School of Business has launched a new program aimed at developing professionalism among undergraduate business students.

The Professionalism Program includes a series of six 1-credit courses focused on fostering career skills, as well as a required internship and networking opportunities. The program also features excellence points (ePoints) for participation in a variety of outside-of-course experiential, development and leadership activities valued by future employers.

The program launched over the 2020-21 academic year with the rollout of the first courses and a successful soft launch of ePoint offerings last spring. The program’s development was informed by survey responses from alumni, employers, and peer and aspirant schools. All undergraduate students, beginning with last year’s freshmen, will be required to complete the program in order to graduate.

“While the School of Business has always prioritized professional preparation, this program provides all of our students professional development and career exploration opportunities from day one,” said Paige Fields, H.D. Price Professor and dean of the School of Business. "The program greatly expands the breadth of these opportunities with a goal of ensuring success in the job market.”

Examples of ePoint-eligible activities include Lean Six Sigma certification, Microsoft Excel certification, CFA or CFP certifications, study abroad participation, the school’s Certificate in Professional Selling or the Jack Lockton Certificate in Insurance and Risk Management, and others. Students track their ePoints using an app powered by software company Suitable and funded by Ernst & Young (EY). Points are placed in the following four categories, or “Flight Patterns”:

  • Core Skills Development and Certifications
  • Career Planning and Networking
  • Student Leadership and Engagement
  • Experiential Learning

Learn more about the Professionalism Program.