Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Picking Courses 101: Multicultural Markets

Student: Nicole Ricchione
Favorite Class: Multicultural Markets

Nicole's Insight:
This semester, I am very excited to be taking Multicultural Markets and Urban Developments with Professor Jerome Williams. Since Professor Williams is new to the Rutgers community, I figured I should share my thoughts on his class and on him as a professor. As a student concentrating in Entrepreneurship, I see a huge need for a class that focuses on how to run a business in the multicultural society that we live in today. One of the main goals of this class is to provide students a better understanding of multicultural markets as it relates to assisting entrepreneurs in urban communities. As a student with an interest in Social Entrepreneurship, I see the need for a class that teaches me how to meet the needs of consumers in inner-city communities. This class is providing me with relevant information I will need when I start my own social venture someday in the near future.
Professor Williams uses a dynamic teaching style that keeps us involved in the class discussion. He is not a lecturer. He keeps us on our toes and keeps us interested. Before each class, we prepare by reading articles and case studies so that we can actively participate in class discussions. For the case study discussions, we are prompted to choose a side and defend our decision. As much as I am not one to enjoy being “cold called”, it does challenge me in the best way possible and it brings me out of my comfort zone. He has no problem playing the devil’s advocate to either side of an argument in order to get us to think more critically. Professor Williams also brings a wealth of knowledge and real world experience to the classroom. We have already viewed numerous video clips of interviews, studies, and cases he was involved in that dealt with issues we have discussed in class such as retail redlining, target marketing to specific ethnic groups, and consumer racial profiling.
A final note about Professor Williams is that he is genuinely a down-to-earth guy who really sees the value in getting to know his students and letting them get to know him on a more personal level. He strives to be approachable and easy to talk to. In the past, he has reached out to students to ask them what makes an effective professor so that he can improve. The common theme was that students want their professors to be down-to-earth and approachable. Therefore, he takes time out of each class to share video clips, pictures, and personal stories that relate to his family or his experiences in childhood and school. He does this in an effort to be relatable and everyone really enjoys this part of class.
As an entrepreneurship concentration, I highly recommend this class as it is not only relevant and extremely useful, but also genuinely enjoyable. I look forward to the next half of this class as well as any other classes I am lucky enough to take with Professor Williams throughout my MBA experience.

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