Pack Your Bags: Business School Abroad

elephant ride

Committing to a major is a tough choice for any student. Sophomore Alison Brady’s tip for picking the right program? Travel the world.

This spring she was oscillating between a science major and something at the Marriott School. Brady thought she wanted to be a surgeon but hesitated to commit to such a demanding career path. She knew business school could open up job opportunities immediately after graduation—but would she actually enjoy the work?

She came across the Marriott School’s study abroad programs, offered through the Global Management Center (GMC). The Global Business Abroad program caught her eye—it offered a crash course in international business, traveling to seven countries in thirty days to explore everything from accounting to supply chains to finance.

“The emphasis of our program is a little different than some of the other programs—it is a general business trip,” says global supply chain professor Scott Webb, director of this summer’s excursion. “We give students a well-rounded view of how business functions in different parts of the world.”

Brady signed up for the program—and decided that the Marriott School was the right fit for her.

“It gave me a better idea of what I was actually looking into doing with a business degree,” Brady says. “My favorite visit was PwC in Rome; I got to see what a day in the life of that office would be like. That was big in helping me make up my mind to apply to the accounting program.”

That’s exactly the goal of the Marriott School’s GMC: to help students imagine careers in international business and then give them the tools to make it happen. The GMC offers nine study abroad programs, many with specialized focuses like finance or social entrepreneurship.

“All areas of business are international,” says Jonathon Wood,  GMC associate director. “We hope students internalize what they learn abroad and lay that on top of what they learn in the classroom. An accountant with a global perspective is poised to take an international rotation. A supply chain manager who understands cultural differences is better positioned within her company.”

Read more about Alison Brady’s and her classmate’s adventures in the Fall 2015 issue of the Marriott Alumni Magazine.