Written by Mickayla Turner, Rollins College of Business Student
Fortunately for students of the Rollins College of Business (RCOB), those that cannot (or do not want to) participate in a semester-long study abroad program can take trips abroad between semesters. The International Business Experiences can last approximately 10 to 14 days and fit nicely in winter break and/or summer break. Winter break was the perfect fit for me. The experience I chose begins just after finals week and puts me back in the United States in time to celebrate the holidays. The timeline may have gotten my attention, but what led me to choose a trip to Peru?
For those that have barely set foot out of the Southeast United States like myself, traveling to another country on a completely different continent can be daunting. The Rollins College of Business offers many information sessions throughout the fall and spring semester that allows students to get acquainted with what the international business experiences will entail. For me, South America has always seemed interesting. I learned throughout the semester that Peru was once home to the great Incan civilization and has many interesting aspects to its culture. Through an online class, my instructor led me through the differences and treasures of Peru. We worked through mini-assignments and I enjoyed sharing my opinions through discussion boards with the class. The great part about the discussion boards was that some of the students already had experience traveling abroad and shared their stories with us. Toward the end of the semester we were able to meet in person and get acquainted with everyone that is going to Peru. Through the meet-and-greet I realized that I had several classes with those going on our upcoming trip!
At first I was expecting to be going somewhere completely unknown to me. However, through the assignments and videos from our instructor, I have learned so much about Peru and what to expect upon our arrival.
Through videos I learned that Peru has amazing cuisine that focuses on sweet potatoes. Did you know that in Peru there are over 3,000 varieties of a sweet potato? Peruvians also have a dish made with guinea pig called cuy. I am not particularly interested in trying this dish, but I think it shows how cuisine varies greatly from one country to another. In addition to food, Peru has some natural wonders. The most recognizable is Machu Picchu. However, Lake Titicaca is a hidden treasure. The world’s highest lake navigable to large vessels at 12,500 feet above seal level in the Andes Mountains.
Along with the natural wonders of Peru, we will be visiting many businesses and even taking a cooking class! This cultural immersion allows Rollins College of Business students to get a deeper look into how international economies function. As the trip approaches, I know we will be prepared to fully immerse in all of the great things Peru has to offer.
To learn more about Rollins College of Business International Business Experience courses, visit: https://www.utc.edu/college-business/academic-programs/international-programs/index.php