Keshia Johnson is an MBA candidate who is participating in the Global MBA program. As part of the program, she has completed both a semester in India and a semester in China, and she will be returning to Case Western Reserve University in the fall to complete her final year of MBA coursework. For more information on the Global MBA program, CLICK HERE.
How did you make the decision to participate in the Global MBA program?
I was not initially considering the Global MBA program. I was going to complete the traditional program and remain local which meant a short commute to class by bike. When the Global option was presented, I considered the opportunity to travel, the immersion into another culture, and the honor of being a part of an inaugural program. The Global MBA also presented a unique program that allowed me to learn about business management practices of China and India directly, a perspective that cannot be learned in a distant classroom.
What was one thing you did abroad that you couldn’t have done in Cleveland?
Because we were not involved in the Weatherhead community and did not have access to programming, I initiated efforts to form a Women of Global MBA group. This provided a forum for the 14 women in the program representing five countries to come together and learn about working culture for women in different countries. In China we held events to build our relationships and in India we partnered with the female professors to conduct a workshop on "Leading Ladies in the Workplace" presented by a local industry leader.
What advice do you have for students who are considering the Global MBA program?
Do it! The Global MBA program gives the participants a unique experience to be fully engaged in different cultures. This exposure will expand their perception of people and the world.
How has studying abroad changed your global perspective?
I have interacted with people from many nationalities in the United States, but I learned that interacting with a different nationality in their own country is more comprehensive. You learn more about their practices and customs and you learn to appreciate and understand the history behind their mannerisms, actions, etiquette, etc.
Give us a fun fact about a country/location you visited.
In China, many of the young couples like to dress alike and it is not unusual to see the boyfriend carrying the girlfriend’s purse.
Who in your life has encouraged you the most to have a global perspective?
My family has always encouraged travel. We take a 'Johnson Family Road Trip' every year and because of these trips I have seen most of the contingent USA. My mother has encouraged the global perspective by through her own actions. When she was the owner of her business she travelled to Africa for a trade mission. This broadened my personal perspective of the world and piqued my interest for global business development.