Suzanne Altobello Named Belk Distinguished Teacher for UNCP School of News

Suzanne Altobello Named Belk Distinguished Teacher for UNCP School of  News

Her passion is to teach students how to apply marketing concepts to real-life examples of community organizations, startup companies and larger corporations. “I do a lot of project-based initiatives in my classes, working with clients and collaborating with entrepreneurship hubs and small business development centers,” she said. “My preference is to bring clients into the classroom. This is a great opportunity for students who don’t have that level of business strategy and management experience. It gives them an awareness of the challenges businesses face.” For the past three years, she has taught in the Broadwell College of News and Economics at Fayetteville State University. Her previous teaching stints include UNC Wilmington, Notre Dame and Southern Illinois University. She spent an eight-month sabbatical teaching at the Grenoble Graduate School of News in France. Earlier in her career, she accompanied her study abroad students to the business school in France for 14 years at SIU. Presently, she teaches marketing research and social media analytics twice a year at Aalto University in Finland.

Though she has taught almost every course in an undergraduate and MBA marketing curriculum, her expertise is market research, specifically target market analysis, digital marketing and social media analytics. She is a marketing and entrepreneurship professor with a technology-oriented, analytics-focused and project-based approach to her courses. “As the William H. Belk endowed professor, I’ll have the responsibility of enhancing economic development for local businesses, as that was the initial intent of the endowment.”

As she’s done throughout her career, Altobello will coordinate project-based learning projects at UNCP, connecting students with startups, community organizations and small businesses in the area. “I’m extremely excited to be returning to UNC Pembroke,” Altobello said. “I had an excellent working relationship with the faculty, students and staff while I was here previously. I’m eager to come back and finish what we started in this new role, with regard to working on economic development initiatives in the area and partnering with the Thomas Entrepreneurship Hub.

A native of Port Chester, New York, Altobello moved to North Carolina in 2014 and lives near the coast with her husband, Kevin. She has two daughters, Julia, a rising senior at Duke University; and Sophia, who will be starting at the North Carolina School of Science and Math in the fall. Mark Locklear the Public Communications specialist for University Communications & Marketing. “This is an amazing opportunity,” she said. “Dating back to my years at the University of Florida and Notre Dame, I’ve never taught at a university with a new school of business building. This was a big part of the draw to come back to UNCP. We have this shiny new diamond to show organizations, employers and donors when they come to our campus. All those things are critical for the growth of the business school, along with collaborating with the Thomas Entrepreneurship Hub and the Small News and Technology Development Center.”

Altobello said she’s excited for the opportunity to join UNCP’s business faculty in the new $38 million James A. Thomas Hall, which will house the Thomas School of News. She holds degrees from the University of Florida and the University of Notre Dame. Altobello completed her doctorate from Notre Dame and a post-doctoral fellowship in marketing from the University of Florida.

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