Pivot’s Business Communication Course Prepares Fellows to Launch Careers

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Pivot Fellows giving speeches in the business communications course
Pivot Fellows giving speeches in the business communications course

When Sharon Welsh was asked in 2018 to teach a business communication course for the Georgetown Pivot Program, she eagerly accepted. With over 25 years of teaching experience as an adjunct faculty member for Georgetown’s MBA and postgraduate programs, Welsh was excited to join what was, at the time, a new and ambitious business certification program for returning citizens.

“I find teaching for the Wounded Warriors program very satisfying, and I thought this would be the same,” Welsh said. “I like helping people who really need it.”

Now six years later, Welsh has taught over 80 Pivot Fellows a wide range of personal and professional communication skills, including how to handle conflict through negotiation, write networking and business pitch emails, and give effective business presentations.

Adjunct Faculty Member Sharon Welsh

“Communication affects all parts of life, but what’s great about this course is that it gives them skills to be successful in their internships, to be successful in their future jobs,” she said.

As the Fellows approach the beginning of their internships in March, Welsh’s course equips them with the critical skills they need to communicate effectively in a professional environment.

“Communication skills are something we teach right from the start of the program, and continue to emphasize all throughout,” Pivot Executive and Academic Director Dr. Alyssa Lovegrove said. “We also find it increases the Fellows’ confidence and sense of being able to advocate for what they need, in or outside of work.”

Pivot Fellow Lewis Collins said before joining the program, he knew how to articulate himself in speech but didn’t know how to translate those skills for online communication.

“I didn’t know how to write an email, how to format them until we learned step by step in this class,” Collins said. “I still have a ways to go, but I am on my way there.”

Outside of teaching for Pivot, Welsh runs a successful independent communication consulting firm, where she has trained a long list of high-profile people in the nation’s capital. But to her, teaching Pivot Fellows critical communication skills is the most rewarding.

“I’ve helped a lot of very rich people, influential people, be better speakers,” Welsh said. “But there’s just such fulfillment when you can help people who have suffered hardships and need these skills so that they can be successful in launching their careers.”