BOLIVAR, Mo. — Woods Supermarket, headquartered in Bolivar, Mo., is partnering with Southwest Baptist University to launch a training and internship program that gives SBU students an opportunity to receive career training with pay as they work with professionals in the grocery industry.
“By working entry-level jobs the first year, and then advancing to management training, students will learn real-life what it means to run a retail business with all its challenges and rewards,” said Joan Woods, co-owner of Woods Supermarket. “They will also learn the many opportunities and careers a business such as Woods can provide. Woods is looking forward to coordinating the program with the business school at SBU and opening this opportunity for many students.”
Qualified students will work 20 hours or less per week during multiple semesters to complete the program that is designed to provide work experience in areas such as business, management, marketing, finance and human resources to enhance their academic training. Successful completion of the program also could potentially result in a management career with Woods Supermarket after graduation.
“This is a rewarding hands-on opportunity for students, which will enable them to see concepts they learn in the classroom applied in the retail environment,” said Dr. Troy Bethards, dean of the Robert W. Plaster College of Business and Computer Science. “I am excited that Woods Supermarket desires to come alongside of SBU to invest in the next generation of leaders. The training program Woods has put together is a rich experience that will prove beneficial for all involved.”
Additionally, Don and Joan Woods, owners of Woods Supermarket, have established an endowed scholarship to be awarded to students within the Robert W. Plaster College of Business and Computer Science. Students who are successful in the training and internship program will be given preference in scholarship awarding.
“We look forward to creating this partnership with SBU in order to coordinate the academic side of student learning with a coordinated management training program in the business world of retail,” Joan Woods said. “The hands-on experience students will receive from Woods will help students understand the reasoning that goes into merchandising and marketing, which includes digital and online ordering and fulfillment, labor and other major expenses, customer services issues, understanding finances, inventory controls, and training and education programs for associates.”
Woods Supermarket operates 12 supermarkets and five Woods Express locations in Missouri with pharmacy service at eight locations.
SBU is a private, Christian liberal arts university offering more than 80 academic areas of study on its four campuses in Bolivar, Springfield, Salem and Mountain View, Mo., with total student enrollment of 3,600.