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Cornerstone for Business

collage of images illustrating the cornerstone concept

Communication evolves with each generation, but the principles don’t. Students must be prepared to speak well, write well, and interact well.

Purdue’s new School of Business will imbue students with strong communication skills and a deep knowledge of the history of business to effectively build bridges between technology and humanity.

Our business students will benefit from a new writing lab, additional case competitions, and a new four-course communication series that features classes on written and oral communication, the foundations of business, and strategic business writing.

Taught by faculty with industry experience, the innovative strategic business writing course will be required for all students and will focus on six key communication principles, many of which are currently missing in a traditional business school curriculum:

Key Communication Principles

Learning a great history

Many students are influenced by a culture that increasingly doubts the value that profitable businesses offer society. Our business students will begin their journey with a close study of transformative texts in which great thinkers have grappled with the history, philosophy, and economic theory of market capitalism.

“As we chart a new course for business education, the School will be marked by graduates who embody the values of wisdom and creativity, grounded in a firm grasp of today’s technologies and their likely evolution and awareness of the history of progress that freedom of enterprise has created.”
— Purdue University President Mitch Daniels

Cornerstone for Business, a unique collaboration with the College of Liberal Arts, will give students the background into the why of business in addition to the how, and become a model for business schools across the nation.

A Cornerstone for Business Certificate will be awarded to those students who complete all related courses, giving them a deep understanding of the development of economic history and thought.

A new writing lab with video rooms for high-quality and virtual interaction will foster an environment that understands the value of communication, providing dedicated space for case competition preparation and interaction with our career services office on items such as resumes, cover letters, and interview prep.

New curriculum and dedicated writing lab space will put an intense focus on students’ ability to think critically and communicate effectively.

Making a case
In a recent case competition facilitated by our Communication Center, students proposed locations for a startup company’s pilot program.
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We will build upon the success of our Communication Center, which offers competition experiences both integrated into course curricula and outside of the classroom. Foundational communication skills will be honed via dramatically expanded use of case competitions, to sharply enhance communication, teamwork, problem solving, and professionalism in our students.

A case competition is an academic competition in which students come together to solve a case, or issue, under time constraints. Working in teams, students deduce a recommendation that they support in a presentation in front of judges or company sponsors. These experiences allow students to improve competencies highly valued by employers.

The cases are often constructed by corporate partners, giving students the opportunity to showcase their problem-solving skills to potential employers.

Students can attend and participate in national case competitions across the country in addition to on-campus competitions. We will increase funding for students to travel to compete in off-campus case competitions. 

case competitions & workshops
150+

corporate partners in 2021-22

Communication Center, 2022

We will dramatically increase the number of students who participate in case competitions and related workshops. Through our new Partnerships Office, we will grow our number of corporate engagements.

Our enhanced Communication Center, new writing lab, and Cornerstone for Business series will train students to think critically and communicate effectively. We’ll place a special focus on ensuring students can interact well with others, a focus often missing in a traditional business school curriculum.

Purdue is creating the future with our new School of Business.
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