What's the connection between good business and doing good? As a school with a conscience, St. Edward's University is challenging business faculty and students to consider that equation.
With nearly 200 students (graduate and undergraduate) pursuing international business programs or concentrations within The Bill Munday School of Business, it's clear that our students recognize important shifts toward a global economy.
The Global Business Institute for Societal Responsibility, launched at St. Edward's University in 2009, takes an innovative approach to study abroad by finding business projects with a social justice focus in other countries.
Each year, students, faculty and alumni travel to a different part of the world, where their courses are structured around a particular project or problem. Through class work and hands-on collaboration, these teams work together to create socially responsible and viable solutions.
Take Costa Rica as an example. Proximity and connections developed during other study abroad trips make it a good partner. Casa Luz in San Jose, Costa Rica, provides a home for teen mothers and gives them the life skills to be better parents. It's a worthy mission that business students at St. Edward's helped strengthen.
On a recent study abroad trip to Costa Rica, undergraduate students helped Casa Luz enhance a fledgling jewelry-making enterprise. Meanwhile, MBA students worked alongside Casa Luz administrators to devise a workable business plan and a fundraising plan to upgrade facilities.
The experiential learning didn't stop at the borders of Costa Rica. Back on campus, undergraduate and graduate students explored international tax laws and other matters pertinent to nonprofits, and students in the Business Communication courses competed to create a winning fundraising brochure for Casa Luz.
Students with an interest in these topics can apply to live in a related Living Learning Community.