By Moraiah Mitchell
This spring break marks the 10th year Professor Swinder Janda and the College of Business Administration initiated the international business study aboard program.
Janda, professor of marketing and the Robert M. Edgerley chair in global business, is a faculty of distinction.
The idea for the spring break study abroad program came about in 2003 when Janda realized that most of his students did not understand the concept of exchange rates and how they affect marketing decisions internationally. The students had a difficult time understanding because most of them had not traveled outside of the U.S. Janda conducted a short anonymous survey to evaluate how many students would actually be interested in a short study aboard program and because of the high level of interest, the spring break international business study aboard program was created.
By personally arranging all business and cultural visits, Janda made the trips affordable so that most students who had a desire to travel internationally could do so. Over the last 10 years, this study aboard program has taken trips to visit companies such as BMW and Audi in Germany, Ogilvy Advertising Agency, Chelsea Football Club, Cerner Corporation in London, Cadbury’s Chocolate Company in Birmingham, near London, and the European Commission in Brussels, among others.
“This type of study aboard trip is an affordable way for students to break out of their comfort zones, establish self-confidence, understand diversity and develop close friendships while learning about international businesses,” Janda said.
This year’s trip goes to London and Munich. There is a sense of pride that Janda feels with this program, and it has become an integral part of his academic experience. These trips have not only defined his role at the College of Business Administration but also at Kansas State as a whole. Janda also has led student groups on trips to Argentina, Chile, China, Italy and Spain. In the future, he plans to expand his study aboard trips to countries such as Australia and Brazil.