By Briahnna Brown
The George Washington University School of Business (GWSB) was recently awarded a $1.3 million grant from the U.S. Education Department to continue its programming within the Center for International Business Education and Research (GW-CIBER).
The center, which won its first CIBER grant in 2006, aims to promote U.S. competitiveness abroad by educating and training future business professionals in international business and foreign languages and cultures, as well as support research in international business and related fields.
The grant renewal funds GW-CIBER through 2022. The GWSB center is among 15 centers for international business education around the country to receive the grant.
“This renewal of funding confirms GWSB’s pursuit of excellence and the importance of GW-CIBER in enhancing our commitment to international business education and research,” GWSB Dean Anuj Mehrotra said.
The interdisciplinary programming through GW-CIBER brings together faculty from across the university to collaborate on research projects and to enhance the educational experience of students, said Anna Helm, faculty director of GW-CIBER. The center also aids in funding students’ international endeavors such as study abroad and overseas consulting projects to encourage experiential learning.
With this grant cycle, GW-CIBER will focus its programming on the themes of institutions, inclusive globalization and U.S. competitiveness, Dr. Helm said. It is building a partnership with West Virginia University and the University of Richmond to bring together researchers and students from all three schools and leverage the strengths of each institution. GW’s proximity to and relationships with government agencies, for example, will help with learning about international trade policy.
GW-CIBER also will continue its support of the teaching of business language courses in Arabic, Chinese, German, Korean and Russian, while integrating lessons on cultural concepts, all of which are important for success in international business, Dr. Helm said.
One new initiative is that business language students will have an opportunity to work on international consulting projects in the target language.
“We will continue leveraging the strength and reputation of our GW research community by focusing on the importance of institutions for business and society to flourish, but also wanted to capture changing sentiments toward globalization,” Dr. Helm said. “There are increasing concerns about the ways in which globalization has impacted the very fabric of our society, and it is important to illuminate what this means for international business opportunities.”
With the new grant, GW-CIBER also plans to build a community of practice for international business, which will leverage the expertise and connections of alumni and other mentors to prepare students for careers in international business. Students will also have opportunities to engage with the real world of international business through case competitions and site visits to firms with international operations.
“It's really a testament to the success we've already built in this program and in our institution,” Dr. Helm said of the grant renewal. “Together with GW-CIBER’s excellent team, Alexis Gaul and Nevena Yakova, and alongside our committed faculty coordinators who represent multiple disciplines throughout campus, I look forward to further enhancing the operations, programming and ultimately the impact of the GW-CIBER.”