Boston University has one of the largest international populations at any university in the United States – over 20% of our students are foreign. Our international classmates study in each school and college; however, a large portion of those students enroll in the School of Management – over 1/3 of the student population.
The School of Management has a large concentration of global diversity. As a student in the School of Management, I always love to share an experience I had with some of the international students.
In the School of Management, we work in team structures to model it after a real world business environment. Six to seven students work on assignments or projects for a particular class. Two to four of the students on the team are guaranteed to be from outside the United States.
Spring semester of my freshman year I took one of the foundation courses for the School of Management called Business, Society, and Ethics with Professor Kabrina Chang (my favorite!). I was on a team with two students from China, a student from India, a student from Vietnam, and a student from Serbia.
This experience taught me how to overcome culture barriers in order to finish projects. I was able to see how each member went about a particular task and then see what connection that had to their customs. I was also able to see how I worked and what I had learned in the United States about teamwork in comparison to my teammates.
Whether I have been the only one from the United States on a team or there have been three other Americans on a team with me, each experience has taught me something different about working with a diverse group of people. I have learned how to solve communication issues, think on my feet, work with people who maybe do not work just as you would prefer them to, work with people who prefer you to work a different way than you are used to, work as a leader, work as someone who is used to being a leader but can also take direction, work with professors to try and analyze what exactly they would like to see, and most importantly, how to be a team member.
Finishing the first semester of my sophomore year, I already feel equipped to work with people internationally in any environment whether business, social, or personal because of my team experiences in the School of Management.