There are a lot of different programs that you can choose from for study abroad. I think it will be beneficial for you to read over my unique program. This past summer, I studied abroad in the Netherlands. My program was hosted by Maastricht University, ranked in the top 100 for the best universities in the world by Forbes.
My classes were unique, one was an economics class with a focus in culture and case studies. In order for this mix to work, the class took me from the Netherlands, to Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, France, and England. We visited some of the biggest companies in the world and were able to ask them all kinds of questions.
Some of these company visits included the headquarters of Bayer and Bayer, Google, and Deloitte Consulting (more is listed at the bottom of the post). We got to see the culture and operations that these companies implemented; which made me decide that I would love to incorporate a European environment for teams to thrive in. I think the way that teams work over there is inspiring. All of the desks face each other, there are lounges for the team members to eat together, Google had a board game room for their employees to play and share ideas in. Almost every company provided some type of entertainment and health center to their employees, which I think improves moral for everyone.
While in these countries I also had the opportunity to talk with local artisans in Paris, walk in the tunnels under Maastricht City in the Netherlands, swim in Zurich Lake in Switzerland, have a champagne tasting at Pommery Champagne in Reims, France, along with so many other incredible experiences.
When we were back from the study tour, I took a class in leadership and management that focused on how to become an interdependent person. It made me question how I view leadership, and it showed me the difference between leadership and management. Leaders turn followers into leaders, managers make sure operations are going efficiently, and there is a huge difference between the two. Once I got back to the States, I took another managmenet class, which does not preach these same topics. It is really interesting to see the difference between what they teach leaders over in Europe compared to what they teach here. Europe was 10/10 and I cannot wait until my next adventure abroad. See the list below to see all the cities I visited:
- Leverkusen, Germany (Bayer and Bayer Headquarters)
- Cologne, Germany (Weekend trip: Chocolate Museum, Museum Ludwig)
- Luxembourg City, Luxembourg (Central Bank of Luxembourg)
- Brussels, Belgium (Grayling Consulting and the American Chamber of Commerce to the European Union)
- Brugge, Belgium (Canal tour)
- Reims, France (Pommery Champagne House)
- Strasbourg, France (European Union Parliament)
- Paris, France (Edgar Quinet, The Lourve, The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development or the OECD, and Musée d’Orsay)
- London, UK (Tate Modern Art Museum, Google Headquarters, and the UK Parliament)
- Scheveningen/The Hague, Netherlands (Port of Rotterdam and American Embassy Visit)
- Amsterdam, Netherlands (Amsterdam Stock Exchange and Deloitte Consulting)
- Zaanse Schans, Netherlands
- Maastricht, Netherlands (School)
- Zurich, Switzerland (Weekend Trip: Boat tour, river swimming) This is also where I had my favorite meal out of the whole trip, Fondue at Le Dézaley.