2022 Forage Award Winner

Forage recently honored the University of Mississippi School of Business Administration as a top institution for experiential learning in the nation with a #1 ranking for Mississippi, #3 public university, and #14 overall.

Forage is an open access platform that develops virtual work experiences for students that replicates what it is like working at top companies such as Microsoft, JP Morgan, Lululemon, and many more. In virtual programs that last approximately 5-6 hours, students learn the relevant skills necessary to complete a typical work day at that company. At the completion of these programs, students receive industry-based certificates in areas such as finance, marketing, management, virtual communication, and law.

During the Covid-19 pandemic, the Office of Career Preparation in the business school sought to expand virtual and remote opportunities for students through creative partnerships with programs such as Forage. The School of Business Administration Dean’s office saw the benefit of such programs and encouraged faculty to integrate these experiential learning experiences in coursework as applicable.

Business Communication 271 was one such course that utilized Forage to support experiential learning. Wesley Dickens, Assistant Director of Experiential Education and Instructor of Business Communication, said, “Our goal is to prepare our students for real world experiences and Forage gave us an opportunity to simulate the skills necessary to be successful at many Fortune 500 companies.” Dickens utilized Forage as a final assignment in his class and students were tasked to complete a Forage virtual program related to their areas of career interest and submit the industry certificate and reflection paper upon completion.

The students were very receptive to the experiential learning assignment. “We received 100% positive feedback from the students and they all recommended that this be added as a permanent assignment in the course,” said Dickens. One student claimed in their reflection, “I can say without a doubt that it taught me the most out of any assignment or course I have taken throughout my time as a student at Ole Miss.” Another student said, “The videos, voicemails, emails, and other forms of communication really drove home the sense that you were there…It is not often that you actually enjoy the final for the class.”

The School of Business Administration is extremely pleased with the partnership with Forage and looks forward to continuing to bridge the gap between industry and academia through experiential learning.

For more information on Forage, please visit https://www.theforage.com/

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