By Kylie Gibbs, marketing intern, Mike Cottrell College of Business
While most students headed down to the beach or back home for spring break, 25 Mike Cottrell College of Business students were beginning the trip of a lifetime through the College’s annual London Experience international study abroad program. On March 11th the group boarded a plane for an overnight flight to London’s Heathrow airport and when they landed the morning of March 12th they hit the ground running. With an itinerary filled with visits to amazing companies, tourist attractions and free time, there was never a shortage of things to do on the London Experience. The students visited Lloyd’s of London, a Jaguar factory, Coca-Cola London, Newell Rubbermaid and Cisco Systems Inc. During these daily visits, the students were able to network with top professionals and engage in presentations truly seeing international business in action. London was just named the financial capital of the world and many U.S.-based businesses have offices overseas, making it the perfect place for our Mike Cottrell College of Business students to visit.
In their free time, students visited the Tower of London, Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Stonehenge, Stratford upon Avon and more. They even enjoyed a few musicals, including the Lion King and Wicked. Student Katelyn Matthews, a self-proclaimed history fanatic, loved the opportunity to see sites that she had only read about in books. Said Katelyn, “My favorite site was Big Ben. I saw it almost every day and pictures do not do it justice. It is a spectacular site.” The culture of London is rich and deep, making it one of the most diverse places in the world.
Students raised their own funds for the trip, but scholarships through the school were made available to help cover costs. Katherine Guzman said with the support of her family and scholarships through the Mike Cottrell College of Business and Center for Global Engagement, she was able to study abroad, “When I learned about the opportunity of traveling to London, I couldn’t resist the opportunity since I was graduating this semester. I immediately found ways to fund my trip and to make my dream come true.” The price of the trip included airfare, hotel, continental English Breakfast each day, a seven day pass on the Underground, admission to all the attractions and bus transportation.
So why should students go on the London Experience? Associate dean of students Katie Simmons says, “Students should go because it is a great way to get started on an international experience. London has an extremely diverse population and is accessible with a great transportation system. It is different, but still familiar as English (with some variations) as it is the local language. Students get to experience one of the world’s great cities.”
When asked to give advice for students wishing to go on the London trip next year, Stephen Galloway said, “The best piece of advice I can offer is to tell students to go. The trip is a once in a lifetime opportunity. You will never have the chance to hang out with other students or faculty like this while seeing first hand how your degree and the classes here at UNG can apply in other global markets…London is an incredible city with so much to offer.”
Interested in learning more about the London Experience? Visit our website for further information.