COB Students Benefit from Studying Abroad
By Danielle Dewald
As today’s global economy is quickly developing into a more diverse culture, a greater number of College of Business (COB) students are taking advantage of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire’s outstanding study abroad programs. In choosing from countries, such as Australia, England, Japan, and Germany, students have a variety of opportunities. They are able to immerse themselves into a completely new culture, gain international experience, and learn basic business skills from new and different perspectives.
“Because of our fast paced society, students simply cannot stay put; they need to keep moving.”
CIE study abroad coordinator
UW-Eau Claire is currently affiliated with thirteen locations housing prestigious universities offering courses in business: Lismore, Australia; Perth, Australia; Graz, Austria; Santiago, Chile; Lancaster, England; Winchester, England; Limerick,Ireland; Kansai Gaidai, Japan; Cuernavaca, Mexico; Monterrey, Mexico; Växjö Sweden; Frankfurt, Germany; and Suwon City, Korea. “The world of business is extremely competitive.” according to Karl Markgraf, director of the UW-Eau Claire Center for International Education, “By studying at one of these business-oriented universities, College of Business students are able to gain a competitive edge.”
By living and learning in a new culture, students are able to open up their mind and look at business issues, concerns, and strategies from a completely new perspective. "Because of our fast paced society, students simply cannot stay put; they need to keep moving, " according to Cheryl Lochner-Wright, CIE study abroad coordinator. "Students need to study abroad because the skills they will gain will give them an advantage."
Our society has become exceedingly global, and no business is only local anymore. As a result, employers are progressively seeking graduates with international experience. "Skills employers see from students who study abroad are the same skills they are looking for when hiring students domestically," according to Lochner-Wright. "Employers equate the experience with initiative, flexibility, risk-taking, and determination. By studying abroad students create a concrete way to demonstrate those skills."
Susan Lochner, also a study abroad coordinator, agrees with Lochner-Wright. “Employers have found that students who take advantage of study abroad programs are willing to go outside their comfort zone.” By taking part in an international experience, the student is basically forced to think outside the box and come up with new ways of doing things.
COB students have the world at their feet if they choose to take advantage of these programs. Regardless of which program they choose, the experience will allow countless doors to be opened and an abundance of opportunities to arise. The traits that they gain and the memories they make will be carried with them for a lifetime.
Danielle Dewald is a senior marketing student from La Crosse, WI. She wrote this article for a BCOM 306 class project.