Yung Jae Lee

Later this month, students in Saint Mary’s Executive MBA and Professional MBA programs land in Seoul, South Korea, for an immersion trip to sharpen their understanding of how business is done in Asia, and bring those theories to life.

“This trip will help give our students a global perspective,” said Associate Dean of Graduate and Global Programs Yung-Jae Lee, a native of Korea who will join the students abroad. “It should be eye-opening. They’ll be able to see how the theories they’ve been taught in the classroom connect to real life situations. It’s a very exciting opportunity.” 

Immersion trips are an essential part of Saint Mary’s MBA Programs, and consist of two academic components—lectures, and visits to companies and organizations. Guest lecturers on the trip to Seoul will include C-level managers from LG Electronics, Doosan, McKinsey & Co., and Electronic Arts. Along with hearing lectures, students will also visit Korean economic powerhouses, including LG, General Motors Korea, Samsung, and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering.

“These are very high-level executives our students will get exposure to on these company visits,” said Lee. “Our students will have an opportunity to ask questions of business leaders who don’t normally make themselves available. It’s such a valuable opportunity.”

Accompanying these speakers will be lecturers from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology. Topics include doing business in Korea, Asian financial markets, and an introduction to the impact of the DMZ on the Korean economy. To better prepare for the trip, students were asked to write summaries on Korean news stories, as well as review Daniel Tudor’s Korea: The Impossible Country.

The trip will also include cultural outings, to give students a sense of life in the country outside boardrooms and classrooms. Students will tour the Korean Demilitarized Zone which separates North and South Korea, visit Gyeongbokgung Palace, take in a Nanta—a Korean nonverbal comedy—and a tour of Seoul.

“There are a lot of future business opportunities with Korea, particularly for businesses on the West Coast and California,” said Lee. “This trip will give our students an edge—by the time they come back; they’ll have gained valuable insights into how business in Korea functions. It can be a vital experience.”

The 10-day trip will begin on Tuesday, June 24, and end on Thursday, July 3. 

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