LAFAYETTE— The University of Louisiana at Lafayette set the grand opening of its Northwestern Mutual Sales & Research Lab for Thursday.

“The ultimate objective of the new facility is to provide the region with ready access to a pool of well-trained potential sales and marketing employees ready to make an immediate impact on any organization they join,” Gwen Fontenot, of the Marketing and Hospitality Department, said in a news release.

The ULL Department of Marketing and Hospitality will host the event.

The facility was designed to give students experience-based training and will be used by ULLand businesses for research and other functions, Fontenot said.

ULL students recently used the facility to prepare for events such as the International Collegiate Sales Competition at Florida State University in November and at the regional Bayou Sales Challenge at Nicholls State University this month.

The grand opening will be from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Thursday at 214 Hebrard Blvd. on the ULL campus.