Please Support WWU’s International Business Students!
Our five international business professors give our students a broad grounding in international business concepts. The wide perspectives (Ted Alden in public policy; Shih-Fen Chen in marketing; Skylar Powell in organization theory; Tom Roehl in economics and East Asia; Shantala Samant in strategy and emerging markets) give academic breadth to the students, a far cry from a time some of you may remember where you took a ‘Tom Roehl’ major. To get even more out of this conventional grounding, however, we are asking for your continuing support to help students gain experience outside of Western. Study abroad, international internships, as well as domestic experiences outside the classroom give the students the opportunity to apply the principles from the classroom and get yet additional perspectives. As Professor Roehl put it in a message to the virtual graduation: 'Be comfortable being uncomfortable.'
Here is a picture of Roehl making a virtual graduation video. To see the full video, go to our LinkedIn group page, WWU International Business Alumni. Not a member? Send Professor Roehl a request to join.
We thank many of you for supporting these initiatives on Give Day the past few years (last year 22 of you provided more than $7000 toward these twin goals). The gifts were about equally split between study abroad and domestic student experience support. IBUS alumni contributions were 'best of the rest' for the second straight year, trailing only the much larger, established programs in Accounting, Marketing and MSCM. Let's try to keep that position and improve the rankings in the number of alums contributing.
Like last year, that student experience support paid for a team of our students to participate in the NASBITE International market Research Case Competition. This year we did not make the finals. We however did better in the Boeing Case Competition. A team of five, three with ibus ties, beat UW, Portland State and Central. the team members were able to see that the best place to get value from dissembling a plane at the end of the useful life was in an emerging market, not in the Arizona desert.
A Program To Be Proud Of
Our students continue a record of outstanding performance, both in the classroom and in the community. For the fifth time in the last decade, one of our students, Alina Sokolova, was selected as the CBE Presidential Scholar. Selection requires high academic performance, good organizational leadership and a commitment to diversity.
Like all nominees, she had a almost perfect academic record. She took over the struggling International Business Network club and provided guidance to a team that made it successful. She drew on you alums to give a chance for current students to see the variety of career paths they could consider with their degree. Alina was also instrumental in restarting the Professional Women's Club in CBE.
- The International Business Study Abroad Scholarship
Your WWU Give Day donation will allow us to give stipends toward airfare to our IBUS students to help them travel and gain professional experience abroad. Studies show, and data from our own alumni confirm that those who have meaningful study abroad experiences have better career opportunities.
While scholarships exist for tuition, the cost of airfare is a major barrier for many of our students who wish to travel abroad. This stipend will open the doors for these students and give them a global experience that they will bring back to Western’s campus. With your contributions each year, we can give 10 of these $1,000 stipends. With increased support, we can increase that amount to an even more impactful level to meet the needs of this new environment. And of course, it would be great if we could give all international business students in each cohort that same level of help now that COVID is in the rear view mirror..
- The International Business Program Fund
Before COVID, we entitled this as “Bringing IBUS students to the Seattle market.” With COVID, ironically, because of enhancements to our virtual environment, we can think about a wider market where our students can interact. Building the WWU International Business program brand requires both professors and students to be more visible in the Seattle and the wider market. We will contunue participation in the national International Business case competition. Next year the final will be at a physical site, so we would like to have funds available if our team reaches the finals.
Events like field trips to visit companies, networking events with alumni, and attendance at international trade and country-specific programs all add significant value to the program. Contributions to the International Business Fund will allow us to continue and expand these kinds of student activities. We made our first post-covid Seattle trip to Microsoft just last week. Let us know if your company would be a candidate for a visit in the future.
International Business Challenge Funds!
The first $5,000 in gifts to International Business programs will be matched dollar for dollar by Professor Tom Roehl and some generous alums. Thank you for joining him in investing in International Business students!
We know that many of you are not in a position to make financial contributions at a given time. Remember that you can help is so many other ways as well. You can let us know about internships and jobs (maybe even posting to the LinkedIn group as job openings appear at your firm); you can provide assistance to current students interested in your company or field of expertise. You can pitch Western’s international business program to family and friends looking for universities for their children. As we struggle to build enrollment from the covid downturn, this is increasingly important. If you have not yet registered for WeConnect, our Career Center’s program to connect alums to current students, please consider doing so. The IBUS group there could be better represented.
Thank you for considering supporting the International Business program. We look forward to face-to-face interaction as the crisis further recedes.