Kelce College of Business students are playing a big role in the success of two new downtown businesses.

Students in Mary Kay Wachter’s marketing course worked with Davey Froman, owner of Miners + Monroe, on a comprehensive marketing plan for the mercantile store. The students also presented tips on how the store could create and host engaging events and enhance its social media presence.

“We will be able to take pieces of every team’s presentation from Ms. Wachter’s class and implement directly for our business,” Froman said. “Each team prepared unique and beneficial ideas to help grow our business locally and regionally.”

Students in Wachter’s course also worked with Janie Rush-Williams, owner of Sugar Rush, on a marketing plan. In teams, they pitched their ideas for rebranding, enhanced social media posts — even a mobile ice cream store. Rush-Williams said she appreciated their fresh perspective and tech-savvy insight.

The students said the real-world experience was invaluable.

Justine Barrett, a senior from Olathe, Kansas, dreams of a career doing exactly what her team did in Wachter’s course. Barrett combined industry research with what she’s learned working part-time at LimeLight Marketing, another new downtown business, on the Sugar Rush project.

“Getting to work with a real client in class is preparing me for my career,” said Lauron Hey, a junior from Rogers, Arkansas, who also wants to one day work in advertising making pitches to clients. “It’s great that Pitt State has this kind of relationship with the community.”