Why Join the WWU Marketing Program?

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By: Eric Cuamacateco


Being amidst a current global pandemic (COVID-19), many students probably feel as if they are going through the motions regarding their course work. Which is understandable considering the majority of classes are being held through Zoom meetings. Keeping that in mind the Marketing Program provides a vast array of opportunities, to feel engaged and productive throughout your marketing career. I’ve personally had the opportunity to engage with fellow marketing students, staff, and professionals through events held by the department. The courses have been designed to provide students with hands-on learning experiences that are useful in today’s marketing profession. 

Why Marketing?

Many view marketing as just advertising and sales, however, it’s far more than that. If you like doing detective work, maybe market research is for you. There is also the creative side to marketing where you are able to construct content that can effectively communicate a company’s value proposition. For me(opens in new window), I like digging deep into a company’s purpose and goals to strengthen their brand identity through digital channels.   

As someone with a bachelor’s degree in marketing, there are a vast amount of jobs that are at your disposal. Western Washington University’s (WWU) Marketing Program offers coursework in many areas that will prepare you for your future career. The areas of study include(opens in new window)

  • New Product Development 

  • Pricing Strategies and Implementation 

  • Brand Management 

  • Various Communications Strategies 

  • Management of Services 

A group of people sit at a table with printouts of graphs and a computer.

Potential Marketing Careers

As previously stated, marketing opens a vast array of career opportunities. When it comes to business, many sectors are somehow related to marketing. That being said, it opens many pathways for individuals to find their perfect job. Washington State is the home of some of the most successful tech and start-up companies and continues to be a space where marketing professionals are needed. 

Your ideal destination depends on the unique set of skills, values, and personality traits you hold. Below is a list of potential jobs(opens in new window)  you can consider, traditional and non-traditional, when it comes to marketing. 

  • Admission Representative 

  • Brand/Product Manager 

  • Event/Meeting Planner 

  • Market Research Analyst 

  • Public Relations Representative 

  • Sale Representative 

If these titles seem a little daunting now, don’t worry. Throughout your marketing career at WWU, you’ll gain the tools and connections necessary to be successful. 

Hands-on Learning

All of the professors in the marketing program will gladly help and guide you to achieve your goals. I would like to highlight two of the professors that I’ve had the pleasure of taking their course. 

Starting with  Dr. Cat Armstrong Soule, an Associate Professor who is focused on judgment and decision making within the exchange and consumption context. In other words, she concentrates on how consumers form perception and how those perceptions are related to intentions and behaviors. 

I had the opportunity to take Dr. Armstrong’s Consumer Behavior course and I gained invaluable information regarding the decision-making process. The course also provided an on-hands learning experience through the partnership with a local client. This meant that we had the chance to develop strategies and solutions for our client. 

For most students when they take Consumer Behavior, they must take Marketing Research in conjunction with the course.  Dan Purdy was the instructor for Marketing Research during the time I took the course. Professor Purdy is a Senior Instructor of Marketing in the College of Business and Economics (CBE) at WWU. He has a passion for holistic marketing including organizational and marketing strategy, integrated marketing communications, and integrated brand development.

The Marketing Research course provided the class with the skills and framework needed to conduct market analysis through primary and secondary research. The course was designed to help students understand data and how they can use it to prove a hypothesis. 

The reason I chose to discuss Consumer Behavior and Marketing Research is that both courses build the fundamentals needed for the upper division classes. Not to mention that they help prepare you once you are ready to look for an internship. 

Opening the Path Towards Success

So far, the topics that have been covered are the reasons behind pursuing a marketing degree, the job opportunities, and the hands-on learning that the department offers. If that’s not enough to make you excited about our program, I have one more topic I would like you to consider. 

How about networking? Have you ever heard the phrase “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know”? Well actually, it’s a little bit of both! Networking can be such a challenging thing for those who don’t like stepping out of their comfort zones. The program offers events off and on campus for students to build their network. Whether you are looking for a mentor, job, or friend, networking is a great skill to have in your toolbox. 

Three students sit at a table, gathering around a laptop.

The program hosts events such as meet the professionals and the case competition where they invite Western Alumni and professional, from the area that are willing to help the students in the marketing program. Some professors, such as  Mark Staton(opens in new window),  take it upon themselves to contact an individual in the field to come and speak to the class.  

All you would have to do as a student is to take advantage of these opportunities presented to you! If you are new to the department then joining the Student Marketing Association (SMA(opens in new window)) would be a great way to meet and connect with fellow marketing students and faculty. Resources are out there to make the most of your experience in the marketing department! I encourage you to attend an SMA meeting, the case competition, or the meet the professionals’ event. Hope to see you all there!