McDonough School of Business
News Story

Senior-Level Speakers Bring Business and International Relations Learning to Life

Students in Georgetown’s Master of Arts in International Business Policy (IBP) program regularly have the opportunity to hear from senior-level speakers on real-world issues related to their course work. Recent speakers have included the lead trade policy negotiators of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, the CEO of Nike Vietnam, and a Fulbright University professor in Ho Chi Minh City. 

Offered by Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business and Walsh School of Foreign Service, the IBP program is delivered in six one-week modules, and two four-week online courses, that each focus on a specific theme. Themes include “The Mindset of a Global Manager” and “Crisis and the Future of Europe.” The modules themselves consist of numerous opportunities for applied learning such as site visits and lessons from guest speakers. IBP students also visit Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and Frankfurt, Germany, as part of the program. 

“Guest speakers help students understand the needs of practitioners who are often solving problems for clients using concepts and theories addressed in class. This is important in bridging academic content with actionable strategies that can be implemented for governments and businesses alike,” said Bardia Kamrad, academic director of the IBP program, professor of operations and information management, and senior associate dean for executive degree programs. 

Speakers provide students with an idea of what real work is like in each respective field. “The students appreciate hearing from guest speakers who are willing to share insights from their work and offer career advice. Typically, you’ll see a group of students interacting with the guest speaker long after the talk has ended,” Kamrad said.

John Carey (IBP’19) said he was most impacted by these genuine interactions between speakers and students. “These experiences fundamentally changed the way I prepared for and attended subsequent lectures and interacted with my cohort peers. Moreover, these experiences imparted a depth of knowledge and professional confidence that I needed to advance my career in the near and long-term,” he said. 

Hearing directly from senior-level practitioners on contemporary global issues was a uniquely Georgetown experience for many students.

“The discussions with IBP guest speakers provided insightful, real-world application of the program’s core learning objectives. The opportunity to interact with global business and policy leaders is an invaluable Georgetown experience,” said Alyson Segawa (IBP ’19).

“Understanding the Singaporean model of economic growth and development while listening to the economic counselor at the Singaporean embassy made me realize the importance of good leadership and governance. It left me encouraged to know that it is indeed possible, if we have the foresight and vision, to build a nation,” said Nqobile Chitimbire (IBP’19).

M.A. in International Business and Policy