The start of franchise education for most individuals interested in this type of business model often begins when journeying toward business operation to further one’s goal of greater self-sufficiency. For some, the research stage starts among advisors, friends or family members involved in franchising, after attending one of the many different types of franchise expos, or even online research.
The importance of franchising is huge with a vast majority of U.S. business operation occurring through the use of the franchise business model. As a result, business students at both the undergraduate and graduate levels are gradually being exposed to franchising in college courses more and more.
The Virginia Tech Pamplin College of Business is one institute of higher education offering such courses, with a new course directed specifically at fostering awareness of franchising in the undergraduate business community. The course, to be entitled Franchising for the Services Industries, will be offered through the Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management during the spring term of 2016.
With a focus on both theoretical and practical aspects of franchising, the course will introduce students to franchising as a viable option for entrepreneurial pursuits as well as business operation.
Virginia Tech was one of the first to implement courses focused on franchising at the graduate level of higher education over 15 years ago in 1998, a course that targets better understanding the impact of franchising in the field of hospitality management.
Franchising has yet to make a sizable impact in the world of higher education business curriculum development despite its undeniably strong impact on not only the economy of the U.S. but also the culture.
Nonetheless, programs do exist in various cities in different U.S. states, though many tend to focus on educating existing franchise professionals as opposed to incoming students discovering much of the foundational knowledge that will dictate their future career plans and pursuits. One such program, the Certificate in Franchise Management, is offered through Georgetown University as part of its Center for Continuing and Professional Education.
Though more detailed exposure to franchise concepts and ideas may be slow moving at the undergraduate and, perhaps to a slightly lesser degree, graduate levels, courses such as these will help to foster a greater awareness of franchising in budding generations new to business, including younger entrepreneurs that are showing an increased interest in franchise business development.