HubSpot and Howard University partner for Center of Digital Business
Partnership covers both students and faculty for experiential learning and research opportunities.
The age of digital transformation will make demands on people entering the digital workforce, and with that in mind Howard University and HubSpot recently announced building upon their current relationship with the launch of a Center of Digital Business that will be located within the Business School and is part of a five-year commitment that HubSpot is making to Howard University.
For well over 150 years, Howard University has been a premier institute of higher education within the Historically Black Colleges and University (HBCU) circuit, especially within the school of business. There are well over 100 HBCUs across the U.S., and they work with a wide range of corporate entities to develop mentoring and corporate personnel pipelines. Howard University’s relationship with HubSpot goes back to 2018.
“This is much more than a company writing a check,” said Andrew Lindsay, SVP of Corporate and Business Development at HubSpot, who is also an alumnus of Howard University. “At HubSpot we feel that it’s vital for leading businesses to play an active role in the development of the next generation of Black business leaders and this center is just one key component of our commitment. We have had HubSpot execs teach classes, worked together for recruiting and a pitch competition. At HubSpot we see across all industries that everyone is accelerating the digital transformation, no matter the age of the business, so students and recent graduates need to understand how business is changing at a faster scale and be equipped with the digital skill set to succeed.”
Howard University’s School of Business is scheduled to begin offering credit courses through the Center for the spring 2021 semester. The initial course will train students on conducting a social media audit as a tool to provide strategic business consulting in the digital marketing world.
“This partnership is about providing experiential learning opportunities, our students need the practical experience of learning to see what they learn in the classroom applies to the real world,” said Anthony Wilbon, dean of the Howard University School of Business. “At Howard we take pride in preparing our students and making sure our curriculum reflects the changing face of business and we have had to do make adjustments to this changing workforce.”
Digital business certification. Students will be able to attain an academic certification in digital business or earn a degree concentration in digital business. The experience will also include case competition, internships, consulting opportunities, student clubs and guest lecturers from executives from leading businesses currently integrating the digital transformation in their operations and marketing. Relationships with seasoned professionals and students will be built at the Center as part of professional development and personnel pipeline efforts. Students will receive a problem-solving based curriculum, where they are encouraged to solve real and current problems in the digital marketing world.
Academic institutions can be slow to make adjustments to fast-moving trends in the corporate marketplace. This is one trend, however, everyone can agree on—the digital transformation is here to stay. National education leaders like Howard University have been put under a microscope to make the necessary adjustments and increase certain resources to better prepare all students for the new digital world, a transformation nobody saw coming this fast.
“Through this corporate partnership it will allow us to build more bridges with HubSpot and create and identify research opportunities for our faculty,” said Wilbon. “This partnership is a comprehensive approach.”
The partnership will be displayed in the curriculum in the center and digital marketing programs.
Other companies should participate. “We are recommending other companies to participate and help because Howard University has a tremendous legacy of producing exceptional leaders in the business world,” said Lindsay. “Students now need to build a certain comfort level with the software before they graduate and enter the job market.”
The Center will focus on skill development and teaching students about the exact job responsibilities that go behind job titles at corporations. Career fairs will also be hosted several times each year. Entrepreneurship will also be strongly encouraged.
“We hope that students engaging with the Center will take with them the current and in-demand skills needed to excel in corporate jobs,” said Yuvay Meyers Ferguson, associate dean at Howard University of Business. “And most importantly we plan for them to be equipped with the tools needed to create their own successful businesses.”
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