Aiming for $1 million: How Students Shoot for the Stars with the ADA

Posted by on January 2, 2013

Minnesota School of Business-Lakeville instructor Minnie Wagner has incorporated her passion for supporting the American Diabetes Association (ADA) into service-learning projects for her business administration degree students.

Recently, students from a Customer Service Strategies class visited the ADA offices to assist with making phone calls to solicit funds for an upcoming event. Minnie was

Business Administration degree

Minnie Wagner, business administration instructor

diagnosed with diabetes 10 years ago. Since then, she has been an active member of the ADA. Minnie joined our Lakeville campus in 2011 and since then has been encouraging student and staff involvement with supporting the ADA.

For this particular project, students developed an understanding of the role of technology in customer service and practiced their verbal communication and listening skills, all while helping a great cause. The clients had already received packets in the mail related to the auction, and students followed up with a call to receive the funds. A majority of the students did receive donations over the phone for the silent auction.

Upon completion of the applied learning project, students wrote a reflection paper in which they were asked to demonstrate how they applied the course’s content and theories. The paper asked students to reflect upon their experience and knowledge and to describe how they utilized customer service strategies when they were making customer service calls.

“Making these calls is helping to instill confidence when dealing with customers,” one student said. “Being able to help customers with a smile, even when on the phone, is essential to the success of a businessMinnesota School of Business.”

Minnie reflected on the project: “Students were hesitant at first because of the long drive, but they became more comfortable throughout the quarter as they continued to improve upon their customer service skills.”

Molly Duerr, associate director for the ADA Minnesota Area, gave great reviews of the students because they had great attitudes. Molly also commented that a few of the students were “quick” to learn and were fast in making calls. In fact, a few students made over 40 calls in an hour and a half. They were happy to have the students and are interested in working with future MSB-Lakeville business administration students.

Last month, Minnie and 64 dedicated volunteer committee prospects packed Pizza Luce for a morning of inspiration as the ADA launched their Tour de Cure Million Dollar Mission. Attendees learned the basics of diabetes, the ADA, the Tour de Cure, and also learned how they can help raise $1 million to stop diabetes in 2013. 

The Tour de Cure is the signature cycling event of the American Diabetebusiness administration degrees Association, and occurs annually in more than 40 states across the country.  The Twin Cities Tour de Cure is one of the largest in terms of both riders and dollars raised to stop diabetes, and they have set an ambitious goal of raising $1 million in 2013. 

The Twin Cities Tour de Cure will take place on Saturday, June 1, 2013 at Minnehaha Falls.  Riders of all ages and abilities are invited to choose from one of six fully supported cycling routes: 7, 18, 27, 45, 62, or 100 miles.  At the finish, participants enjoy the best after party in the business with lunch, music, massages, vendors, beer garden, kid’s zone, and more.  The motto of the event is: Ride. Party. Stop Diabetes.

The Tour de Cure is seeking riders, volunteers, and committee members.  They also offer unpaid internships.  If you are interested, please visit the Tour de Cure website for more details or contact event director Janeece Oatman: joatman@diabetes.org.

By Minnie Wagner, Minnesota School of Business-Lakeville, Business/Healthcare Management Program Chair and Janeece Oatman, The Tour de Cure, Event Coordinator


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