It’s no secret we live in a global economy, with the U.S. reportedly importing an estimated $2.7 trillion and exporting an estimated $2.2 trillion worth of goods or services in 2012.
There are few borders left when it comes to commerce, which will make your international business degree valuable indeed when you enter the job market.
“Students in international business take a lot of the same classes other business students take, but they’re also asked to take four semesters of a foreign language and they’re asked to complete some kind of study abroad experience,” says Scott Niederjohn, division chair of business administration. “And we make that very easy for students, whether that means they’ll do a three-week class internationally or do something for a semester or even a year.”
See the world and learn
There’s a new class called “Study Abroad in Business” which involves traveling to exciting places around the world during a May term. You’ll spend one week preparing for your trip in the classroom at Lakeland and two weeks traveling.
“If you want to go to China or Japan or Europe or the United Kingdom or South America, these trips are going to happen, so you just figure out when you want to go because this is the rotation,” says Niederjohn.
International Business at Lakeland
It’s difficult to talk business with people from other countries when you speak only English. That’s why we mandate two full years of a foreign language for this degree.
“That is different than other schools and different than our other programs in business,” says Niederjohn.
Given that U.S. trading with Mexico reportedly totals about $500 billion a year, Spanish is a popular language related to this major. Chinese is another popular language among international business students, with German and Japanese also offered.
Name: Pratikshya Bhandari
Hometown: Kathmandu, Nepal
Title: Investment risk management specialist
Business: Northwestern Mutual
Pratikshya was 18 when she packed two suitcases and left home, bound for a place more than 7,000 miles away that she had never seen in person.
“My first impression of Lakeland did not do it justice,” the 2011 Lakeland graduate says today. “It was raining and gloomy. But I told myself, for better or worse, this is where I’m going to be.”
Like many international students, Pratikshya experienced a bit of culture shock early. After all, her densely populated hometown has about 1 million people, who inhabit just over 200 square miles. Sheboygan County has just over 100,000 people, comfortably scattered across more than 500 square miles. “Now when I go home to Nepal, it’s too loud and bustling for me,” she says with a laugh.
Academically, Pratikshya shined at Lakeland, earning a bachelor of arts in international business. She then earned a master’s of science in applied economics at Marquette University before landing her fulltime job at Northwestern Mutual in Milwaukee.
While she stresses that Lakeland fully prepared her scholastically, she says the social experience had the biggest impact on her development as a person. Two of the classmates she met during freshman orientation remain among her best friends, and that was just the start of her social investment in Lakeland. During her time here, she was involved in the Global Student Association, International Food Fest, Habitat for Humanity, Lakeland’s community service group and the student newspaper. She also enjoyed Friday movie nights with friends and worked as an assistant in the president’s office.
“The first time I turned on a stove was at Lakeland College,” she says. “School doesn’t teach you things like that, people do. It was the personal touch that mattered so much to me. I felt valued there. The people at Lakeland College made sure I was well-positioned to face the future.”
She strongly recommends Lakeland College to prospective international students, recalling the time she had lunch with her friends and noticed there were students from seven countries at the table.
As for that shaky first impression of Lakeland College, it’s a distant memory.
“I’m still in touch with professors and students,” she says. “When I think of Lakeland, I think of the great people. It’s the people who make the place.”
Listed below are just some of the jobs or graduate school positions Lakeland College international business students from recent graduating classes have landed:
- Global transportation coordinator, Johnsonville Sausage
- Veterans service representative, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
- Investment risk management specialist, Northwestern Mutual
- Accounting assistant, Hillcrest Builders
- Resort reservations specialist, Kohler Co.
- Customer service, Heartland Business Systems
- Graduate student, Marquette University
- Law student, University of Utah
- Graduate student, UW-Madison
- International associate, Johnsonville Sausage
- Mergers and acquisitions specialist, Mead Nutrition
International Business Faculty
International Business Major (53 semester hours and foreign language competency)
- ACC 210 Financial Accounting Principles
- BUS 200 Business and Professional Protocol (2 semester hours)
- BUS 284 Principles of International Business
- BUS 301 Management Information Systems
- BUS 330 Management Principles
- BUS 335 Study Abroad in Business OR
A minimum of 3 semester hours of a divisionally approved international experience
- BUS 340 Principles of Business Finance
- BUS 350 Marketing Principles
- BUS 366 Global Financial Markets
- BUS 410 Business Law I
- BUS 445 Logistics and Supply Chain Management
- BUS 469 Global Marketing and Management Strategies
- BUS 474 International Laws and Regulations
- BUS 491 Business Policy and Strategy (Writing Intensive)
- ECN 220 Principles of Macroeconomics
- ECN 230 Principles of Microeconomics
- ECN 365 International Economics
- MAT 220 Probability and Statistics
Two years of foreign language study (14-16 semester hours); a combination of two languages may satisfy this requirement as long as the student receives Business Division approval and completes a minimum of two semesters (6-8 semester hours) in each language.
Note: Available business emphases that may be pursued can be found in the Business Administration page.