The International Scholar Program

by Heather McCord, International Trade Specialist
Fall 2006


Earlier this spring, nineteen students enrolled in I B 204: Business in Chinese Culture, embarked upon a journey to China to experience the differences in Chinese and American cultures. This semester-long course consists of three components: the first half focuses on the historical, cultural, economic and political aspects of China; the in country experience over spring break submerges the students in the culture and business environment; and the last half is spent communicating their perspective on the trip and the similarities and differences between the countries.

While in China, the group visited four companies: one partnership with a US-based company, one manufacturing facility of a US-based company, a state-owned enterprise and a wholly-owned foreign enterprise. The students were given insight into Chinese business practices and noticed several differences immediately. They also visited many cultural and historical sites in Beijing and Shanghai, including the Great Wall, Tiananmen Square, Summer Palace, the Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Center, Shanghai Museum and an evening cruise on the Huangpu River.

For most of the students, this was their first visit to China; for some, their first time out of the country. It was truly a unique and unforgettable experience from which the students gained invaluable insight into a culture other than their own.

Leading the students on the trip were FCBA Director of International Programs, Jim Foley, ISP Coordinator, Heather McCord, I B 204 Instructor, Dr. Roy Schmidt, and Assistant to the Dean & Undergraduate Programs, Doug Crowe. The Spring 06 trip represented the seventh study abroad trip to China lead by the Foster College of Business Administration with over 100 students participating since 2002.