Mr. Tim Muth, Global Business Perspectives Instructor, was the featured speaker for in the Nathan M. Bisk College of Business Brown Bag Lunch series, October 21st. He shared with colleagues his travels abroad through the U.S. Department of Education Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER); and as part of its Faculty Development in International Business (FDIB) initiative. The overall of these initiatives is to increase and promote the nation’s capacity for international understanding and economic enterprise.
The U.S. Department of Education (ED) funds thirty-three (33) CIBERS across the nation. The CIBER infrastructure was created under the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988. Each CIBER, administered by the U.S. ED, serves as regional and national resources for business students and faculty. Together, the CIBERS provide an academic network in support of education, research, and outreach in the international marketplace.
Mr. Muth identified several of our regional CIBERS including the University of Florida, Georgia State University, Georgia Tech, Florida International University, and the University of South Carolina. Each CIBER offers a variety of FDIB programs, which include travel abroad experiences for faculty from other institutions.
For the past several years, Mr. Muth has been an active participant in FDIBs. His first experience was traveling abroad in the Sub-Sahara Africa region with stops in Johannesburg, Pretoria, and Cape Town, South Africa; Botswana, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Along the way, the cohort visited local businesses to learn more about international trade. These included Jo’burg Stock Exchange, Diamond Min, and Coca Cola – supply chain in Soweto Township. They also visited universities in Pretoria and Cape Town; and had cultural visits that included Robben Island, a safari, Victoria Falls, and the Cape of Good Hope.
Mr. Muth participated in a Mercosur FDIB that included visits to Sao Paulo, Brazil; Buenos Aires, Argentina; and Santiago, Chile. The cohort visited Google, Disney, a local pharmaceutical, Chilean mining company, and a Chilean beer entrepreneur. They also visited universities in each country, and experienced the culture through tango lessons, hiking in the Andes, and participation in a Brazilian “all you can eat” meat barbecue called a churrascarias.
Most recently, Mr. Muth joined colleagues in a FDIB experience that focused on European Economies in Transition. They visited Budapest, Hungary; Sofia, Bulgaria, and Istanbul, Turkey. Company visits included GE Energy, and a Mercedes-Benz truck factory. They also visited with a Hungarian economist who was the first treasury secretary after the fall of the Communist party. Their cultural experiences included an overnight train ride from Sofia to Istanbul (the “midnight” express), museums, religious sites, and a river cruise to the Black Sea.
Mr. Muth has a strong purpose in participating in these travel abroad programs. He integrates his international knowledge and experiences gained through the FDIBs in his Global Business Perspectives class. He has first-hand knowledge of what it takes to be a successful business leader in the international arena. This is supplemented, via FDIB travels, with a localized perspective of culture, customs, language and competitive advantage associated with global regions.
Mr. Muth is the academic advisor for the College of Business Globalization Club, which offers an international experience to all students, faculty, and the Florida Tech community as a whole. The student club hosted a Bollywood themed movie night held on campus in the Olin Engineering auditorium. Popular snacks, typical of an movie theater in India, were provided by Dr. Ami Dutta, Associate Professor of Finance.