Scholarships Support Undergraduate Travel to China and India
Eller Global Cohort students pose in front of a tea
shop in Nanjing, China.
By Liz Warren-Pederson
Gifts from University of Arizona alumni Terry Valeski (BS History ’68) and Jim Miles (BSBA Finance and Real Estate ’82) supported ten Eller undergraduates’ study abroad experiences this summer.
Valeski’s gift also helped support the Global Business Program’s efforts to boost awareness of the Global Cohort to incoming Eller students, and Valeski’s gift will also assist a group of students who are taking BNAD 451: Emerging Market Connections this semester. Those students will travel to India for a two-week trip over the winter break.
“Studying and living in China for ten weeks allowed all 72 of us to experience the Chinese culture in a different way,” said Miles scholarship recipient and finance major T.J. Drogaris. “Living and socializing among locals was not only a lot of fun, but provided a unique learning experience. Being an outsider in such a different world could be frustrating, and coupled with the stress of our first semester of professional business classes was tough, but in the end we grew and matured in a way that would not have been possible otherwise.”
“Taking classes in China really enhanced my business perspective,” said Miles scholar and accounting major Ali Hussain. “My family’s business deals a lot with Chinese businesses, and being in China and seeing those businesses first hand has improved my understanding of my family’s company.”
“As a first generation student, I would not have thought it was possible to have studied abroad, let alone gone abroad this summer to China,” said Valeski scholar and economics and MIS major Betty Lee. “The scholarship not only helped alleviate financial strains of participation, but also gave me the opportunity to be a leader and help my peers gain the most from their experiences.”
Lee and the other scholarship recipients were each assigned peer leadership roles in the China Cohort, which added another dimension to their educational experiences.
“As a director, it was my responsibility to keep track of 14 of my classmates on excursions both in and outside of Nanjing,” explained Miles scholarship recipient and management junior George Andros. “If any of the students had an issue that needed to be addressed, they would let me know. I feel that the experience taught me much about managing people, as well as coordinating a team while abroad.”
“Going to China this summer was a life-changing experience,” said Valeski scholar and management major Greg Maggass. “It opened my eyes to a whole new world of business opportunity and cultural exploration, and because of this I plan on studying abroad in Asia again as soon as I can.”
“While four of the courses we took this summer were available to any Eller student, the fifth class — BNAD 350: Global Business Elective — was not,” added Miles scholar and finance major Luke Pergande. “I believe this was the most useful course I have taken in my collegiate career. Combining this with all of the business meetings we attended and seeing the day-to-day functions of factories, this was by far the most valuable summer of my life.”
Read more about the Global Cohort on the Eller Blog.