Santiago Luna, the coordinator for the Center for Global Business at the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business, writes about the Smith School's study abroad ambassadors.
During the fall 2019 semester, 23 Maryland Smith undergraduate students will participate in semester exchange programs around the world. Of those 23, three highly qualified students will serve as study abroad ambassadors to share their program experience through media content and to serve as resources for prospective study abroad students. The Study Abroad Ambassadors program is a new initiative meant to create a supportive community and culture of study abroad among undergraduate business students.
The fall 2019 study abroad ambassadors are:
Chloe Jones, marketing and multicultural information design double major, attending Yonsei University, South Korea
Chloe Jones has experience abroad through a short-term winter program. She is excited to travel to and study in Asia for the first time. This fall, Jones will learn about how language and culture shape business operations by taking business and anthropology courses and completing an internship. Jones is looking forward to breaking out of her comfort zone and embracing a new culture.
Alexander Leipold, marketing and operations management and business analytics double major, attending WHU Beisheim School of Management, Vallendar, Germany
Alexander Leipold was born in Germany and moved to the United States at age four and has grown up speaking German at home. Leipold loves to travel and has had the opportunity to participate in short-term study abroad programs to Cape Town, South Africa and most recently Tokyo and Kyoto in Japan. This summer he will be interning at a US-German shipping container technology company in Munich. In his free time, Leipold enjoys playing the guitar and writing music.
Omoniola Oladimeji, international business and management double major, attending Manchester University, Manchester
Omoniola Oladimeji is highly involved on campus activities and serves as both the president of the African Student Association and historian of the Sisterhood of Unity and Love (SOUL). Oladimeji is a first generation Nigerian-American and is highly in tune with her culture. She loves to travel and has been to over six countries, 26 cities, and ten states. Her favorite trip thus far was to Hawaii this past January for her twenty-first birthday. She is excited to be going on another adventure in the fall to Manchester Alliance Business School In Europe. She plans on documenting her journey on her YouTube channel as well.
Students enrolled in the Smith School's exchange programs were given the opportunity to apply for the leadership position of study abroad ambassador. Study abroad ambassador is a position designed for students to emerge as leaders through telling their study abroad story during a Smith School exchange program. These exchange programs are the results of agreements made with top business schools around the world that give undergraduate students the opportunity to enroll in semester-long programs abroad, take a full course load of business course in English alongside their host country counterparts, and earn transfer credit toward their degrees. Participating students gain valuable immersive experiences on both the academic and cultural level. Participating in an exchange program is one of the many ways students can develop their global mindset.
“Study abroad ambassadors are leaders among Smith study abroad students.” said Greg Rafal, assistant director, global programs at the CGB, “by sharing their study abroad experience, ambassadors bring more attention to the value of a global mindset in a student's college experience. The role also allows students to hone in on their writing, marketing, and community building skills.”