Don B. Huntley College of Agriculture

Get a Free iPad, Travel the Country and Learn Marketing Research

Published Date: May 13, 2015 11:50:00 AM

ABM 405 students on a trip to Utah for a student marketing competition.

How would you like to take a class where you get a free iPad and textbooks? Or that allows you to travel to other parts of the country?

If you’re a student in the College of Agriculture, you could enjoy all this while learning how to do marketing research and connecting with agribusiness professionals.

Jon C. Phillips, a professor of food marketing and agribusiness management and director of the Center for Food Marketing and Agribusiness Solutions, is looking for 10 students to participate in his Agribusiness Management 405 class this fall.

The class is designed to teach students how to do marketing research, introduce them to local agribusiness professionals, train them how to use Microsoft applications, and develop business and marketing plans.

The course is supported through a three-year, $202,000 U.S. Department of Agriculture grant for Hispanic Serving Institutions.

In addition to the textbooks and iPads, the grant also covers some of the costs for Phillips and his students to travel to industry meetings, competitions and tradeshows.
The events that Phillips’ students have participated in include:

  • An April 2014 student marketing competition held at the annual National Agri-Marketing Association conference in Jacksonville, Fla. Fifteen Cal Poly Pomona students competed against 30 universities from across the country and Canada
  • The annual conference of the Food Distribution Research Society in Salt Lake City in November 2014, where 10 students competed in the Student Marketing Challenge;
  • The Commodity Classic trade show in Phoenix in February 2015, where students networked with agribusiness professionals.

Phillips’ classes also have had guest speakers who have discussed current agribusiness trends or offered a business perspective on concepts the students have learned. The speakers represented produce growers, poultry farms and ag financiers.

Students in the class can also become certified experts in Microsoft Word, Excel or PowerPoint, which they can add to their resumes. The computer lab in Building 2 is an official testing site for Microsoft Specialist examinations. Thirteen students have passed certification exams.

For more information about taking ABM 405 this fall, contact Phillips at (909) 869-3721 or