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Undergraduates Visit Panama

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Undergraduates Visit Panama for Global Immersion Portion of Course

 

Undergraduate students participating in the 2014 Global Immersion course recently completed the in-country portion of the program by spending 10 days in Panama from January 2-12.  The course is designed to give students a first-hand, practical understanding of business competition in an emerging market, greater understanding of the economy and business practices in Panama, as well as an overview of the benefits for foreign companies doing business in Panama.  It was taught by adjunct faculty Amparo Kollman-Moore, a Latin American expert and former President of Mallinckrodt Latin America.

Prior to departure, the group completed two pre-trip classes to begin the foundation of study and to meet via Skype with the two companies sponsoring the immersion practicums.  Students will meet again this semester to complete the business proposals, and present them virtually to the companies via Skype.  The first live case is with a non-profit education organization called Fundacion ProEd to develop a business plan for the creation of The ProEd Academy in Panama, which will take responsibility for supporting and assuring teacher training and professional leadership development for teachers and leaders in Panama. The other team is working with Metro Farmacia to create a business plan for the development of alternative selling channels for the pharmacy.

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While in Panama, the class visited several international and national companies including the National Banking Association, the American Chamber of Commerce & Industry of Panama, DAMCO (one of the world’s leading providers of freight forwarding and supply chain management services), and the US Embassy in Panama. They experienced the culture of Panama in several ways, most notably by visiting the semi-nomadic indigenous group, the Emberá tribe, living deep in the rainforest and accessible only by canoe.

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While in Panama, students stayed at the City of Knowledge, a former U.S. military base that is now a center for knowledge exchange in Panama City. Located next to the Panama Canal’s Miraflores Locks, the City of Knowledge has an international center for education and is a leader in the areas of innovation, entrepreneurship, and sustainability.

The 2015 course is in planning. For more information, contact the Boeing Institute of International Business by email to biib@slu.edu or call 314-977-3631.

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