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The Center for Global Peace through Commerce supports the Brennan School of Business in its commitment to developing business leaders with a global perspective and real-world skills.
In pursuit of this goal, the CGPC supported students enrolled in GSB 767, Brennan’s International Residency in South Africa in May, 2013. The residency gave students a first-hand introduction to South Africa - as an emerging market economy, a business destination and cultural hub in Africa. Students were given the opportunity to work individually with small business owners in Alexandra Township and spent time with guest lecturers from the Gordon Institute for Business Sciences, South Africa's leading business school.
Both the CGPC and the Brennan School of Business are committed to continuing the residency program in South Africa and adding additional residency opportunities in the future.
"As the week began I didn’t know what to expect in terms of what I was going to see and hear. I kept an open mind about everything and absorbed every little thing that was said and done. Each day was a whole new experience for me. Listening to our guest speakers talk about South Africa with such pride was amazing to see. Seeing and talking to the people of Alexandra was even more rewarding. Sitting down and just submerging yourself in the surroundings was fulfilling. South Africa as a whole was an amazing experience that I will never forget." - MBA student Vanessa Bahena
"The introduction to Entrepreneurship by Dr. Nicola Kleyn was the beginning of our week long journey and set the tone for how we should go about approaching this opportunity we were given. Dr. Kleyn stressed that we take a deeper dive into this new environment and really try to engage, sense, probe, smile, and reflect on all aspects of it. Instead of merely being there to see something different, she wanted us to analyze, retain, and observe situations and interactions around us. This guidance helped in getting the most out of everything we did with the class during our week visit." - MBA student Natalie Danilowski
"Through my experience working with the small business GC Fires in Alex, I learned more about what is necessary to be a successful business leader. During our meetings with the business owners I noticed that they all seemed motivated, determined and committed to the continued development of their business. These experiences impressed me as they involved certain personality attributes that I consider important. These include mental strength, confidence, and being a team player. While acting as a consultant with my group for GC Fires, I realized how important these attributes are to the success of a business owner and his business." - MBA student Kyle Peter
"Before going to South Africa, I was uncertain of what an international residency program really is, and I expected a business tourism trip to an exotic destination in the southern hemisphere, but I did not expect that I can use my academic and professional experience there within Alexandra township, study, and experience life within a community in a different culture. This trip was definitely more experiential learning about global immersion than studying abroad." - MBA student Magdalena Thomas