Apple and Jack in the Box restaurants are among the latest companies to sign up for the C-Suite Co-op program at Drexel University’s LeBow College of Business.
They are joining one dozen other organizations – including Cisco, eBay and Urban Outfitters – in welcoming full-time MBA students into three-month paid assignments working with their chief executives next summer.
“We have leading companies on both coasts in a variety of industries,” said Ron Nordone, assistant dean for graduate programs at Drexel LeBow. “No other MBA program offers students this kind of experience working with people at the very top.”
One company, eBay, started early; MBA student Christopher Norton has been working with eBay’s chief marketing officer, Richelle Parham, this summer. Parham, who graduated from Drexel LeBow in 1991, assigned Norton to her marketing strategy team.
“Richelle is giving me opportunities and exposure that most MBA interns probably don’t get,” Norton said. “I get to attend weekly meetings-of-the-minds. Working with people at this level early in my career is showing me what skills I need to strengthen.”
Norton has spent much of his summer making sense of Excel files overflowing with data, helping eBay identify new markets for its businesses focused on vehicle sales and on parts and accessories. “My statistics class comes into play in a huge way,” he said. “And I’m learning how to put together presentations that tell stories, have implications and are actionable.”
Beginning this fall, all new students enrolling in Drexel LeBow’s full-time MBA will be able to compete for coveted C-Suite Co-op positions.
Here is how the C-Suite Co-op works:
- Companies in a variety of sectors across the United States create a C-level summer-term position for an MBA student who will have just completed nine months of academic study.
- Drexel LeBow identifies the most qualified finalists from the students in its full-time MBA program through a series of assessments and competitions.
- A spring “match day” competition will give C-Suite partners the opportunity to assess student talent and identify the best fit for their organizations.
Students who do not land in a C-Suite Co-Op will have the opportunity to participate in other valuable experiential learning activities, including consulting assignments, international study, internships or other opportunities.
All students will conclude their MBA program with three months of academic study in the fall, during which they will be asked to develop and share insights about their summer experiences.
The inaugural list of participating companies and organizations is: Apple, Aqua America, Cisco, Drexel University, eBay, Involvio, Jack in the Box, Morning Star Co., NBC-owned television stations, Penn Mutual, Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority, SAP, Urban Outfitters and the World Trade Center of Greater Philadelphia.