The MBA Hub

Study Abroad: My Trip to China

I recently returned from the 2013 Study Abroad in Asia trip, and I'm so happy that I went. Modern business is global, and to know China is to know one of the most powerful and ancient countries on earth. Our MBA class visited Shanghai, a major financial center and the largest city by population in the People' Republic of China (PRC).

As we drove from the airport to the hotel in Shanghai I realized that in all my travels I had never seen such a large city.  

By many accounts, Shanghai is the largest city on earth by population, and everywhere you look you see construction rigs. Not only is Shanghai huge, it is also growing. In fact, 60% of the world's new construction occurs in China.  

America and China are the two largest economies in the world, respectively. Knowledge of business development and marketing in China has the possibility to unlock many doors for future business endeavors. Under the guidance of PSU professor Dave Garten, our class explored stories of business success and failure in China as well as cultural differences between the two countries.  

Portland State University attracts many international students who offered still more points of view in the classroom. On our trip, PSU was represented by American students as well as students from Asia (Taiwan, Thailand, and PRC) and students from Europe (France and Germany).  

Opportunities to interact with business and community leaders in China was the best part of the experience. Our class visited numerous companies on this trip such as GM, Intel, NIKE and Chesapeake Printing. Representatives from these companies were enthusiastic about their work and sharing their experiences with us.  

Most importantly, our interactions emphasized win-win solutions for business and community. Doing business internationally can be profitable, but it also comes with challenges. Companies that make sincere commitments to the communities they operate in can affect positive change. Making positive connections builds the community and strengthens the company.  

Jade Buddhist TempleJade Buddhist Temple

Nestled among the modern glisten of Shanghai, I found many links to the past. We visited the Jade Buddhist Temple (founded in 1882), one of only three Buddhist temples that are open to the public in Shanghai. Here, we were treated to a traditional Chinese tea service.  

Travelling internationally has definitely expanded my world view and pushed my thinking. It has also whetted my appetite for exploration and discovery.

The future is bright and I'm excited for what will come next!



Click here to read more posts about study abroad opportunities with the Portland State MBA program

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By Sarah Shannon: Sarah has experience in internal and external business communications, marketing, and management.  She plans to apply her experience and skills to a career in marketing after graduation from Portland State’s full time MBA program in June 2014.  You can find Sarah on LinkedIn.  


Tags: Business Development, China, Dave Garten, marketing, MBA, Portland State University School of Business, PSU, Study Abroad

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Portland State's MBA program has earned numerous accolades, including a 2011-12 Beyond Grey Pinstripes Report rating of #1 in the world — for small schools — for its emphasis on environmental stewardship.