2022 The Exceptional Sales & Marketing Collegiate Award

Lauren Gentile, The University of Akron 


My name is Lauren Gentile, and I am a Senior at The University of Akron working towards a BBA in Sales Management. I have been a member of Delta Gamma Women's Fraternity for 4 years and have served as Director of Scholarship and Director of Alumni Relations. I have been a member of Pi Sigma Epsilon for 2 years and currently serve as VP of Sales. Lastly, I have also been a member of the Fisher Sales Society.


Applications Questions and Answers:

Q: Why do you want to enter a career in sales or marketing

I am passionate about the sales industry because I enjoy helping people better themselves, whether that is personally or in a business setting. I strive to become an expert about products, services and find out how to use those tools to make someone's life or business easier. I am also very self-motivated and competitive which is key for a successful saleswoman. This is because my outcome will depend on how hard I am working. Sale is a field where there are no limits to the success, I can achieve because of the amount of effort I put into pleasing a client or customer. Sales are about helping people, building relationships, and problem-solving. These are three things I am passionate about because I love immense human interaction, networking, learning about people, and solving their problems. Lastly, no two days are alike in the sales world. I look forward to the constant change of pace, and the challenges this career brings.

Q: How do you envision using your sales and marketing skills to strengthen your role in your community

I strive to strengthen my role in my community by networking with as many people as possible. Through my passion for communication skills, I hope to join organizations, like NSME to be surrounded by like-minded, driven individuals. This will motivate me to keep learning. I also hope to be very involved in my community by encouraging my younger college peers to get involved before their senior year. One thing I would change about my college career is getting more involved my freshman year. Therefore, I have been encouraging my sorority sisters I have built strong relationships with to join business organizations like PSE and Fisher Sales. These organizations have improved my communication and relationship-building skills and have made me more passionate about my future. They have helped me get more involved in the community. 

Q: In your own words, cite a company, store or an individual that has given excellent service. How would you use this information in your future sales and marketing career?

To cite a person, a friend, and my sorority sister Hannah Keller. She is a successful, young saleswoman for Goodyear who has helped me immensely throughout my college career. I started my college education as a psychology major. While I enjoyed learning about some aspects of psychology, I knew it was not for me or my calling. Hannah was very helpful and encouraged me to change my major to something in business. Although I changed my major to sales, I was able to use what I learned in psychology skills in a way that was more fitting for my interests in sales. She saw skills in me at this time, I did not see in myself. Throughout the years she always coached me in interviews prepping for jobs/internships, always looking over my resume, and helping me solve smaller problems along the way. She always encouraged me to go above and beyond in not only my classes but in my own professional development. For example, she sent me books to read and insightful podcasts to listen to. She truly taught me that knowledge is power. She has always been helpful and encouraging to me throughout my college and professional career. I strive to be a mentor like Hannah Keller for someone younger in my own life. I feel that mentorship is a key to being successful at a young age. She has truly felt like my personal coach, and I can only hope I can be as resourceful to another individual in my own life. Without her guidance and 4showing me all the ropes, I would not be where I am today.

Q: Upon graduation, what is your ideal career, goal, or position.

Upon graduation, my goal is to start with a Fortune 500 company in a sales training program. In my first year of training, I hope to be a sponge. I want to learn and become an expert in my trade. In the next 2-5 years I hope to be very aggressive in sales and prove my worth to a company. Next, I hope to manage my own team and encourage and teach others to be determined and grow in the industry. Lastly, I would love to stay at a company for my whole career and keep moving up. I want to give my life to a career and be passionate about one company. I want to learn the ins and outs of a company and be a part of their culture and ultimately their growth. I don't want a "job", I want a career where I love waking up every day. I want to follow in my parents’ footsteps because they have both had lifelong careers working for the companies they started at.

Q: Describe an exceptional accomplishment you achieved in sales and marketing. Also include challenges and how you overcame them.

During the summer of 2020, I was in the sales management internship program for Sherwin Williams. The internship was supposed to be very hands-on. Unfortunately, due to covid-19, it was moved to an online format. I am forever grateful because I was given the opportunity to still participate in this program which was cut from 100+ members to less than 25. During the internship, I worked in the store where I learned the retail and management side of the business. I also participated in a group project with 5 other interns. These interns were from all different backgrounds and parts of the United States. I was elected by them to be the team leader. The challenge came when I had to figure out when all of us could meet on Zoom, which was very new to us at the time because we all had different store schedules.  Despite these challenges, my team was able to collaborate virtually and was awarded 1st place in this contest. The group project was on the "Do It Yourself (DIY) customer market segment and their engagement. We had to present over Zoom against roughly 15 other teams who had similar prompts as we did to a board of corporate executive judges. I am very proud of this exceptional accomplishment in my sales career as I was a first-year intern working with a very diverse team who ultimately came out with a victory.


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This is without exception, the single-best networking organization I belong to. They have these amazing educational events where some of the area's leading minds come to share their wisdom. It's awesome!

Jeff McMahan Senior Account Supervisor Innis Maggiore

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