Meet the 2015 GMC Global Ambassadors
The Kay and Yvonne Whitmore Global Management Center is the Marriott School’s expert in international business and provides countless opportunities for students to travel abroad to see global business in action. Each year the GMC picks a group of students to share their stories from various international experiences as a way to show other international business hopefuls what the GMC offers. Without further ado, here are the 2015 GMC Global Ambassadors.
Global Business Study Abroad
Around the world in thirty days, our trip included stops in London, Athens, the Greek Isles, Rome, Florence, Venice, Prague, Munich, Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, and Beijing. Besides seeing all of the famous historical and cultural sites, we visited Barclays Bank, the American-Hellenic Chamber of Commerce, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, Perugina Company, and a Walmart distribution center in China, among others. This trip was an incredible adventure and gave me some of the best friends I’ve made at BYU. It was a big eye-opener for me that international business is more than rules, standards, trade, money, shipping, and the other things we usually associate with global business. International business, and all business for that matter, is about people.
Oxford Seminar Direct Enrollment
From the moment I stepped off the bus, I realized how amazing my study abroad experience would be. Walking down the streets of Oxford, I was transported back hundreds of years. As I entered the colleges, which would better be described as castles, I kept looking over my shoulder waiting for Hermione to pass by. Day trips to Bath and Stonehenge immersed me into British history and culture.
But I didn’t daydream too much because, from day one, this is one of the most rigorous academic experiences of my life. From 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., I attended to lectures from some of the greatest minds in business, helping me to create a strategy for my own social innovation. Beyond the business classes, there were a plethora of lectures from industry leaders from all over Europe. I learned so much!
Chances are you know someone who has gone on a study abroad. You have probably listened to them talk about how great it is and how much they loved it, but so what? What is it about study abroad that makes everyone travel happy? Well, everything.
This past summer I traveled to eight different countries with the Europe Business Study Abroad. I saw the Swiss Alps and the Coliseum. I watched the Eiffel Tower sparkle and rode rides at an Austrian carnival. I walked through a former prison camp in Germany and a World War II museum in Belgium. I toured the BMW and Ray Ban factories and saw the products made firsthand. I sat in conference rooms at some of the world’s most renowned companies and learned from professionals at Credit Suisse, Nestle, Luxottica, and Ducati, to name a few. Not only did I visit the places that are talked about in textbooks, I also had the opportunity to witness all levels of international business from production to management.
This international experience enhanced my education in a way that would be impossible to replicate on campus. It sets me apart in job interviews and has opened up doors for opportunities that I never knew existed. I never realized my international potential until I went on a study abroad. While it is more expensive than a semester on campus, it is an investment with a return that is worth more than any dollar amount.
Europe Business Study Abroad
My study abroad experience is difficult to put into words. The best way I can say it is, “I loved it!” My view of international business has expanded so much. I learned from and made connections with professionals from companies such as Nestlé, Citigroup, and Disneyland Paris. Not only did I learn, but I made lasting friendships with my group, biked 40 km in beautiful Austria, experienced the West End in London, wandered Pompeii in Italy, and witnessed the raising of the bridges in St. Petersburg.
Global Business Study Abroad
The Global Business Study Abroad has been the best part of my BYU experience. I was able to experience the Vatican, watch Shakespeare at the Globe, cruise the Greek Isles, eat gelato four times a day in Italy, and climb the Great Wall of China, all while learning about global business and the world economy. I learned about these topics as we met with Barclay’s Bank, BMW World Headquarters, the United Nations in Rome, and Walmart, along with many other global corporations. Overall, it was an eye-opening experience that gave me fantastic opportunities, new best friends, and a changed perspective on the world that I wouldn’t trade for anything.
Oxford Seminar Direct Enrollment and Portugal Student Exchange
I am a business strategy major with a minor in international development. I studied at ISCTE University in Lisbon, Portugal, where I developed a passion for learning languages. My time in Portugal opened my eyes to the connection between culture, people, and food and my experience inspired me to found aCanela, a culinary spice company that connects people around the world through flavors, recipes, and stories. My love for international experiences continues to grow. I spent thirty-five days backpacking across twenty-one European countries completing individual research on the history of creativity and innovation. This summer I will be in Africa finishing my honor’s thesis and working with Nu Skin to evaluate the acquisition and training of influential agricultural leaders in Malawi.
Brazil Student Exchange Program
One of the most exciting times of my life was when I was an exchange student in São Paulo during the final preparations for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Before starting the program, I was a sophomore unsure of what I would do with my life. My vision of international business and my role in it soon expanded as I networked and interacted with students and professionals from all over the world.
I feel more prepared for an international career now that I have experienced South American business culture firsthand. Working with diverse groups of people, studying foreign affairs, and living like a Brazilian gave me a broader understanding of the world and how I can make a valuable contribution to it.
Europe Business Study Abroad
I had an amazing time on the Europe Business Study Abroad. We were able to go to eight different countries in six weeks. We visited major tourist sites and discovered the local feel of the countries. We had a wide variety of historical, cultural, and business experiences. We were able to go to Normandy beaches and visit war memorial sites throughout Belgium, France, and Germany. We listened to a concert featuring Mozart’s music while overlooking Salzburg. We visited the European Union in Belgium and learned how the EU was formed and how it accommodates twenty-eight different countries. We visited many different businesses, including a consulting firm in London, Disneyland Paris, Swiss banks, and a cheese factory. Because of this study abroad, I know what direction I want to go in, and I have a better understanding of the business world. The trip was truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.