Students travel to Taiwan to learn, intern and build relationships through Global BizTech

Over the summer, eleven students in the College of Business and Economics and the College of Engineering participated in Global BizTech, a seven-week course and internship program held in Taiwan. The intensive program provided an opportunity for students to understand the scholarly, cultural, political and economic factors at play in Asia and the world.

Jack Marr, a clinical associate professor in the management department, chaperones a cohort of students to Asia each year. This year, Marr and the Boise State students spent time with local Taiwanese students at Providence University, which is located in Taiwan’s second-largest city of Taichung, and then headed to Taipei, the capital city.

There, students were thrown into real-world situations that provided more than just a glimpse into international business and relations. Aside from coursework and internships, the cohort witnessed briefings from Vincent Yao of China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the highest-ranking Taiwanese diplomat to the U.S., Canada and Mexico; Lin Chia-Lung, the Minister of Transportation for Taiwan; and Clement Lin, founder and chairman of the robotics firm NEXCOM.

“Not only does this program allow students to apply their in-class knowledge, but it lets them do it internationally while learning and being immersed in a foreign culture,” said Shannon Nielsen, an international business major. “Having the experience from Global BizTech has given me a new level of understanding and confidence in international business that I never would have thought I would reach.”

The cohort furthered the program’s relationships with a variety of global partners, including the Taiwan Design Center and the Ministry of Information Industries and Advantech. It also established new ones. MOSAIC, a program used by state and city level policymakers in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, named cohort member Colton Buzzard its first-ever “Idaho delegate.”

“All of us made and deepened relationships that will last throughout our lives, which is the most valuable aspect of this experience I believe,” said Marr.

International business major Daniel Stoddard appreciated the course material and gained new perspectives on marketing, sales and production while working at NEXCOM.

“Through classroom learning, enterprise visits, fieldwork and creating lasting relationships, the BizTech program has given me the opportunity to experience business and a new culture abroad,” he said. “It was eye-opening and a great source to help me see more possibilities for my future.”

Students also went on field trips to historical destinations such as Sun Moon Lake, the beaches of Kenting, and had the opportunity to travel to Japan, Indonesia, Korea and other locations before or after the program.

According to Kelsey Cooper, a master of economics student, the program “was nothing short of transformative. The work I did was fulfilling and the entire experience is one I know will pay dividends. I’m beyond grateful for the support of Jack Marr, Boise State University and the people of Taiwan.”

Marr already is at work on plans for the summer 2020 trip and hopes to have new internships to offer. If you are interested in applying, please contact him at jackmarr@boisestate.edu.

The program will accept roughly fifteen students across disciplines. You can learn more about the 2019 BizTech cohort here.