Bryant MBA students experienced “unprecedented” access to some of the world’s top companies during their transformational Global Immersion Experience (GIE) trip to Germany in January.
“This trip has taught me how crucial it is for companies to be agile and innovative in order to succeed and maintain their success in today’s competitive environment,” said Rachita Wadhwa ’19MBA.
"The fact that every single participant had to sign a full confidentiality agreement is a testament to how deep we were allowed into Audi’s business."
GIE is a three-credit course that introduces students to the economic opportunities and challenges of doing business in a globalized world. It also includes a 10-day international trip. A required group project with a business in the trip's destination country builds on core constructs of the students’ first semester of academic study.
“These aren’t just emerging businesses,” said Director of Graduate Programs Bjorn Carlsson. “These are businesses at the very top of their industry. We saw a handful of some of the best businesses in the world, all on one trip.”
One of those businesses was Audi. At the company's headquarters in Ingolstadt, Bryant MBA students were treated to an exclusive customized tour. “This was an unprecedented once-in-a lifetime opportunity,” said Assistant Professor of Management Dirk Primus, Ph.D. "The fact that every single participant had to sign a full confidentiality agreement is a testament to how deep we were allowed into Audi’s business."
Students walked among 45,000 Audi employees to learn first-hand what it means to create “competitive advantage via technology.” They saw highly advanced testing rigs and simulators for Audi’s proprietary technology, and sat in prototypes that will be released to market in 2020 and later. Some students enjoyed a test drive with a professional Audi driver. The remarkable tour was made possible by Ronny Mueller, an executive in Audi's product technology department.
In addition to Audi, students also learned about the intricacies of pen fabrication at Faber Castel, and the process of manufacturing airplanes at Lufthansa.
“Students saw first-hand the serious German work ethic, innovation and intense focus,” said Professor of Management John Visich, Ph.D.