Students at Northern Michigan University learned about loss prevention from industry experts.
According to the National Association for Shoplifting Prevention, more than $13 billion are stolen from retailers across the country each year. Because of the money at stake, most corporations employ loss prevention teams to minimize damages.
Loss prevention experts from the Sears Holding Corporation introduced freshmen NMU students in a criminal justice class to the opportunities of taking a job in the private sector.
"What we wanted to do was talk about how they [students] think about a career, what they're looking for in a career," said Bill Titus, Vice President of Loss Prevention at Sears Holdings. "Not just from a specific job that they're doing, but also from a lifestyle standpoint that they need to think about."
Students learned the various kinds of retail fraud and the industry's latest technology. With a tap of an iPad, the Sears Holdings remote system allows executives to access live surveillance video from anywhere in the country.
"It gives us the capability of a couple things; one is obviously we can identify if there is theft going on in a building," said Jill Roadman of Sears Holdings. "It could also be something that can be utilized for safety."
NMU says it offers only undergraduate degree in loss prevention management.
The online program has about 50 students enrolled, but NMU hopes to expand the field of study with this kind of interactive lecture.
"Here were people who actually woke up and picked their head off the desk and actually played the game, trying to understand where that money is going or how was that fraud happening," Titus said. "You get people excited into that, and then you start talking about how they could start fitting into this profession."
NMU students interested in taking their learning to another level can sign up for a summer internship with Sears Holdings.