Professional Sales

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With the boom in Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) providers the demand for Business-to-Business (B2B) Salespeople has grown dramatically.  Top companies like Salesforce, Zendesk, and Amazon Web Services increasing rely on cloud computing and other non-native hardware and software to support their operation.  These businesses, however, struggle to find qualified entry-level salespeople, most notably because there are only approximately 80 colleges in the United States who have a Sales Department on their campus. Furthermore, sales education is often outdated or purely theoretical.  As a result, the majority of the companies we have spoken to are intensely focused on finding college graduates that have practiced skills in professional sales.

Professional Sales, however, is not just a professional skill that will lead to a good job. In many ways, it is a liberal art in its own right. Professional Sales teaches empathy, compassion, listening skills, and lateral thinking – all vital hallmarks of a liberal arts education. And sales in and of itself is an immensely valuable skill for students to have. Over 40% of jobs, and countless daily activities – deciding where to go to dinner, for example – have some component of sales built in. Thus in completing our program in professional sales, students will attain life skills that are valuable both professionally and personally.

What makes this program special? 


Industry Focused:

The learning objectives in this program were developed in collaboration with Fortune 500 companies and fast-growing technology startups to ensure they match as closely as possible with hiring needs.


Practical Experience:

Every class in this program requires students to engage in simulated sales activity with classmates, faculty, and industry experts.

Program Requirements

PRSL 201 - Relationship-Driven Professional Selling

This course teaches a student how to sell. This experiential learning-based course will provide best practice models of selling. It will cover selling from prospecting through relationship building. The use of role-plays and other experiential activities will equip the student with the fundamental knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to succeed in a professional selling position.

Credit Hours: 3


PRSL 211 - Negotiation in Business and Sales

This course focuses on how to conduct and become more skilled at negotiating, while providing an understanding of the underlying basic principles of negotiation.

Credit Hours: 3


PRSL 311 - Sales Leadership

This course is designed to allow students to explore key sales and management concepts, including hands-on analytical and management coaching skills.

Prerequisites: PRSL 201

Credit Hours: 3

PRSL 321 - Advanced Relationship-Driven Professional Selling

This course is designed to continue to develop the knowledge and skills from PRSL 201 Relationship-Driven Professional Selling with a focus on the planning and research necessary to be a credible and compelling salesperson. Additionally, this course will tackle the advanced topics of team selling, negotiating, and leveraging account development activities.

 Prerequisites: PRSL 311

 Credit Hours: 3

Experts, Professionals, and Sponsors

Dr. Lukas Forbes

Western Kentucky University

Lukas Forbes is the Department Chair of marketing and the Director of the WKU Center for Professional Sales. He formerly served in the US Army, attaining the rank of Captain.

Forever Labs

Forever Labs is an Ann Arbor based Biomedical company that seeks to preserve and extend healthy human life through the preservation and reintroduction of an individual’s stem cells.

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