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MA-HRIR Students Take Advantage of Study Abroad Programs

February 20, 2013

While finding time to study abroad as a MA-HRIR student can be difficult, students say it is worth the effort.

Studying abroad as a graduate student with many other responsibilities can be difficult but well worth it, according to MA-HRIR students who studied abroad this past academic year. Meghann McKee Albertson, '13 MA-HRIR, chose to study abroad as a graduate student because she regretted not taking advantage of the opportunity as an undergraduate student.

"It is a great way to broaden the lens in which you view the world, and expose yourself to different cultures, foods, languages, and experiences," McKee Albertson says.

This past January, McKee Albertson was one of 23 graduate students from the Carlson School of Management to participate in the two-week Graduate Global Enrichment course, "Managing in a Global Environment," offered through the Carlson Global Institute in Delhi and Bangalore, India.

Instead of studying in a classroom, the students were learning in the field, gaining insight into the business world of India. The group toured businesses, government agencies, talked to CEOs, and discovered some of the challenges facing the country.

McKee Albertson said the experience abroad will benefit her career in HR by opening her eyes to a more global viewpoint.

"It's important not to just think of America and the things we do, but to be able to see what other countries do and see if there are other solutions," she says.

Jennifer Theisen, '12 MA-HRIR, chose to spend her one week abroad during the summer of 2012 in Dublin and Limerick, Ireland, while enrolled in the part-time MA-HRIR program. While there, she visited a large hospital system in Dublin and spent the day talking with Human Resources about the programs they run.

"Learning how other organizations run their HR can only help make me a more informed HR professional," she says about visiting the hospital.

There are many study abroad options available for students with different schedules and lifestyles. Theisen chose the one-week program in Ireland because it best fit her busy schedule at home and work.

"I chose this program because I have a husband, a 4-year old and a 2-year old. I also work full time in HR and own a restaurant. No other study abroad program would fit into my life," Theisen added.

Theisen advises other students who will be studying abroad to educate themselves on the location they will be studying before arriving. "It will help maximize your short time there and will allow you to communicate better with the people you meet."