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A Summer Abroad: China, Operations and HR

Last summer, Poole College of Management sent a group of students to Shanghai, China for the China: Operations and Human Resources Summer 2018 Program. From local corporate visits to archery lessons to seeing the Great Wall, these students had a sensational time taking in the Chinese culture.

Each student in the program had their own unique experience, but every student was able to realize the apparent and hidden differences between Chinese culture and American culture. Kaylee McBride, a Business Administration (Finance Concentration) Poole student noted that “Personal space is the main difference that comes to mind” when reflecting on her summer in Shanghai. She said that “the metro was usually packed with no room to spare, which was very overwhelming at times, but the locals thought nothing of it.” It was the little things like this that led the students to build their global knowledge and develop an appreciation of cultural differences.

Kaylee McBride on her study abroad trip

NC State professors taught Human Resource Management and Operations Management, in addition to a special Doing Business in China. This experiential course combines in-class learning from NC State and SHU professors with out-of-classroom experiences to explore multiple perspectives of Chinese business methods. All classes are held in the heart of the city at Shanghai University (SHU).

Over the six weeks in China, Poole students have the opportunity for personal travel in addition to their group excursions in Hangzhou, Suzhou, and Beijing. This allows the group to engage with local inhabitants of several cities, see numerous different landscapes, and understand how Chinese culture varies among locations. Poole Junior Kaylee McBride also noted that visiting the Great Wall was her favorite memory of the program, since “it was so impressive in size” and because of “the history associated with it.” Since she had learned so much about it in school, it was amazing to see one of the Wonders of the World first-hand.

The Shanghai skyline

This program presented each individual the opportunity to grow their communication and business skills while challenging themselves to decipher a foreign culture and how they can assimilate themselves in order to have a positive experience. The Pack Abroad has grown with this fantastic group of students, and we could not be prouder of them.