Students from Germany, Spain, Mexico, the Czech Republic, Italy, France, Thailand and the United States attended an Organizational Behavior class in Austria.
As educational institutions restart their international exchanges after COVID lockdowns, Seton Hall’s Stillman School of Business and MCI | The Entrepreneurial School® have leveraged their collaboration agreement to mount an innovative way to engage students to study abroad. In late May, the two institutions fashioned a blended class in Organizational Behavior. In this class, 10 students from Seton Hall, led by Seton Hall Professor and Dean Emerita Karen Boroff, Ph.D., joined with a group of 12 students from MCI.
“In the class were students from Germany, Spain, Mexico, the Czech Republic, Italy, France, Thailand and the United States. The discussion of topics such as leadership, motivation, job values, and more was incredibly enriched by the cultures and experiences of students from around the world,” said Boroff. “While textbooks regularly address topics of global implications of concepts, our students were able to apply immediately these concepts from the rich dialog they had with each other.”
Ondrej Pesek, the International Short Programs Coordinator at MCI noted, “It was a pleasure to support such a project. It underlines our strategy of current business issues and intercultural aspects.”
Susanne Lichtmannegger, Head of International Relations at MCI, oversaw the orientation for all students, providing them with insights about MCI and the Austrian culture. “It was so exciting to restart in-person orientation and we welcomed our colleagues from Seton Hall in this novel approach to exchange relationships. The model was a first for us and has not been replicated elsewhere.” She noted that MCI recently earned top global rankings and accolades for its international orientation for its academic experience from U-Multirank. “U-Multirank, under the auspices of the European Commission, uses a multi-dimensional approach to evaluate international universities,” explained Lichtmannegger. “Our latest blended class structure is just another way MCI continues to be at the forefront of offering superb international educational experiences.”
The entire experience was structured so that students attended classes over five days, from 9 am until 5 pm, from May 30 to June 3. They were on their own during evenings and lunch breaks. Seton Hall students appreciated the ability to set their own arrangements to travel to Innsbruck, and to find lodging that best suited their needs. All students were able to socialize outside of class, providing them the opportunity to learn from one another, share experiences and professional aspirations.
Robert Callahan, a rising Seton Hall senior majoring in sport management and marketing, remarked, “MCI in Innsbruck was the perfect location to study. The city was incredibility easy to navigate and the cultural and natural settings were beautiful.” Fellow student Danielle Sikowitz, who is studying for her MBA in international business, at first wondered whether not knowing how to speak German would be a barrier, but soon learned that the city and fellow MCI students were bilingual. “I found my favorite cafe in two days and felt at home quickly,” she said.
In addition to everything else, Seton Hall rose senior and finance major Miguel Mendez Perulles noted that the timing for the course was perfect. “I was able to immerse myself in an international experience, visit nearby cities like Munich, and still have the summer months to pursue my internship back home.” Along with his classmates, rising junior Ehsan Mirzai, who is majoring in mathematical and finance, easily traveled to Italy with fellow students for a boat ride in the Dolomites. “Of course, seeing the Alps just outside your classroom window was awesome,” he said.
MCI exchange student Guntinun Bonkrathok, who joined the program from Thailand, enjoyed the course and praised the lecturer Dr. Boroff. “She structured the class well and always encouraged discussions. She was very supportive and was always available to her students.”
Seton Hall University and MCI look forward to continuing their exchange under this format. Boroff and Lichtmannegger agreed. “It is an exceptional way to offer international learning experiences for all our students.”
About MCI | The Entrepreneurial School®
MCI | The Entrepreneurial School® combines science and business into one unique concept. International lecturers and experts, a worldwide network and numerous services offer students an unforgettable study experience with excellent career prospects. With more than 300 selected partner universities around the world, distinguished double degree programmes, prestigious international accreditations and top places in several surveys and rankings, MCI enjoys an excellent reputation worldwide. Its location in the middle of the vibrant alpine metropolis of Innsbruck, Austria, promises an ideal study-life balance with a wealth of cultural and sporting opportunities. For more information, visit www.mci.edu/en.