• Undergraduate Global Travel Seminar Trip to Morocco

11/9/2009

A visit to Djemaa El Fna Square, Marrakesh’s lively street market; a meeting with the general manager of Arba-Pro Real Estate Development Corporation; lunch with the mayor of Rabat; a look at a rug manufacturing facility, and a visit to one of the world’s largest ports. These are just a few of the stops on the Sawyer Business School’s Global Travel Seminar to Morocco, scheduled for the spring 2010 semester.

“I like to put together a trip that includes a mix of cultural events and business opportunities,” said Professor Anthony Eonas, who is leading this trip with Mary-Joan Pelletier and has led travel seminars to Beijing, Prague, Athens and other cities in the six years the university has sponsored these seminars. “You need to have a full picture of life in a country in order to understand how business works.”

The trip to Morocco is timely, Eonas said. “It’s increasingly important for our students to understand the challenges of doing business in a Muslim country. Morocco is particularly interesting right now because it is a Muslim country with a secular government.”

The Global Travel Seminar includes four weekly class meetings, the five-day, five-city journey to Morocco during spring break (March 13-21), and a concluding week of classes after the trip.

“The students choose an aspect of the country to research, like the country’s trade rules, tax issues, or whatever, and then they give presentations each week,” said Eonas. “This allows individual students an opportunity to become an expert in one area and then share their knowledge with the rest of the class. It’s a great preparation for the on-site visit.”

The Moroccan trip includes visits to Casablanca, Tangier, Tetouan, Rabat and Marrakesh. The trip also includes a meeting with the American Chamber of Commerce, which can offer insights into how other American businesses navigate in the Moroccan environment.

With five cities in five days, there’s a lot of traveling, but Eonas says he’s built in opportunities to meet with Moroccans in a less formal setting. “Rules and governments may change tomorrow, but the people remain the same,” he said. “Making that one-on-one connection is the key to successful business.”  

Registration is has bee extended to November 30, 2009.       

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