Spring Break in Brazil and India

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March 12, 2011

Economic growth isn’t just about numbers.  It can be seen – in growing skylines, heard – in manufacturing plants, and felt – through the comforts of capital. And only so much of it can be understood by reading the news or a textbook. So this Spring Break, Bradley students and faculty are dropping in on businesses in Brazil and India to experience firsthand how prosperity propels a nation.

“Unless the students are inside the country, they can’t truly appreciate the opportunities as well as the risks of doing business there,” said James Foley, director of Bradley’s Turner Center for Entrepreneurship. Foley is taking graduate students to Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro as part of the international business course “Doing Business in Brazil.”

In India, business professor Dr. Rajesh Iyer and international trade specialist Jim Ryan will take undergraduate students to visit small, medium, and large businesses where they will meet local businesspeople as well as Americans working abroad.

As embedded study abroad experiences, the trips are just one component of semester-long courses involving deep research into these fast-growing economies. Class projects, guest speakers, and reading assignments acquainted the students with their destinations before takeoff, but Ryan said there is much to be discovered on the ground that will enrich their classroom experience back at Bradley. 

“When you return to the classroom, you’re able to put the trip into context and work on some of the things that you learned while in the country,” Ryan said. “I think embedded trips allow students to learn more lasting lessons and really give them expertise to fall back on during their careers.”

Check both blogs daily for up-to-date reflections as the students experience business abroad.