UW-Eau Claire Students Spend Winterim 2011 Studying Abroad in China
By Dan Hartson, Allie Krafve, Emily Micke, and Kelsey Weber
Over Winterim 2011, UW-Eau Claire students had the opportunity to travel and study in China through the new GLOBE CHINDIA Program. The CHINDIA Program was developed with support from a $190,000 grant received in June 2010 by UW-Eau Claire’s College of Business from the U.S. Department of Education. The grant was developed to internationalize the curriculum, faculty, students, and the business community.
"The study abroad program to China will provide our students with unique experiential opportunities that will supplement the classroom curriculum," said Dr. Rama Yelkur, UW-Eau Claire professor of marketing and coordinator of international business programs. "It will better prepare them to function in a globally interdependent workplace."
The 15 students who participated arrived in Shaoguan on January 3, 2011, and began their 12 day study at Shaoguan University. Students heard lectures from professors and industry leaders in China and made site and cultural visits. Also, students took classes on Chinese culture and language, including Kung Fu and calligraphy. Each student was assigned a Shaoguan University student to help get insight into Chinese culture.
According to a Globe Chindia participant, Ashley Krautkramer, a junior marketing major, “My favorite memories were all just spending time with my one-to-one buddy at Shaoguan University. I know that everyone else [who] went on the program would agree that we were greeted by the kindest, nicest students in Shaoguan and couldn’t learn half as much in a classroom as we did from them.” From January 16-18, students made a three-day guided visit to ancient sites in Beijing, China’s capital city to understand the history and politics of China.
Students in all academic disciplines who had a cumulative resident GPA of 2.3 or higher and at least sophomore standing were eligible to apply. After the completion of this program, students earned three credits of BSAD 191-Special Topics. Financial aid was applicable to the program and 13 scholarship opportunities were available to students. “Many of those [who] went, including myself, were very fortunate to have help in paying for the program. Studying abroad is always expensive, but I felt there was a lot of opportunity for financial help,” said Krautkramer.
Life-long lessons and memories were created by the participants that will guide them in an increasingly global-dependent work force. “The most valuable thing I learned was that all people are really fundamentally the same,” explained Krautkramer. “We often distinguish ourselves by race or whether you are foreign or native, but everyone you meet really has a lot in common with you, even if they don’t speak your language.”
A study abroad program similar to the GLOBE CHINDIA program is being planned for Winterim 2012, which will take place in India. Students can stay updated to the UW-Eau Claire homepage for upcoming details.
For more information on the students’ experiences during the 2011 GLOBE CHINDIA program visit china-winterim.blogspot.com.
From left to right: Dan Hartson is a senior marketing-professional sales major from Oconomowoc, WI; Allie Krafve is a senior management-entrepreneurship and marketing major from Maple Grove, MN; Emily Micke is a junior accounting major from Wrightstown, WI; and Kelsey Weber is a junior marketing major from Menomonie, WI.They wrote this article for their BCOM Advanced Writing class.