Marketing Department Debuts New Sales Development Program

Lisa Simon and Cal Poly Marketing Students at Sales CompetitionPictured above: Cal Poly Marketing students at the National Collegiate Sales Competition (NCSC) in Kennesaw, Georgia.

The Marketing Area is proud to announce a new senior project course in sales development. Assisted by corporate partners ADP, Citrix Online, Fastenal, Henry Schein Dental and TEKsystems, the Sales Development Program (SDP) senior project gives students hands-on experience in the selling process and explores the professions in sales and sales management.

Alumnus JD Torres, who completed the program and graduated from Cal Poly in 2015, says that the experience was extremely helpful in preparing him for success in the professional world.

“Even though I did not enter the field of sales after graduation, many of the skills I learned and practiced in SDP have been very applicable to my line of work. Through SDP, I was able to practice valuable communication and quick-thinking skills in professional sales situations,” said Torres.

The class is offered during fall and winter quarters at Cal Poly, and each quarter features a sales competition between students. The winner of each quarter’s sales competition has the opportunity to compete, all expenses paid, at the National Collegiate Sales Competition (NCSC) in Kennesaw, Georgia. Students are coached by marketing lecturer Lisa Simon and consistently distinguish themselves at the NCSC while competing against powerhouse schools offering degree and certificate programs in sales.

Cal Poly and NCSC corporate partners appreciate the quality of Orfalea College of Business students and have hired many former and current students for internship and career positions.

“[The] Sales Development Program prepared me immensely for the real world,” says Jon Grishpul, who competed at the NCSC in March. “We learned valuable hard sales skills and also had the opportunity to nurture and hone these skills with relevant real-world applications and in realistic sales environments. I owe all of my success to the SDP and NCSC process.”

For more information about the Sales Development Program, please contact Lisa Simon at