Global Embrace

Eastern Michigan University birds eye view
Courtesy of Eastern Michigan University

Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti has the most diverse student body in Michigan and, according to President James Smith, that diversity pays extra dividends in the school’s college of business, especially when international students are factored in.

The university has students from 80 different countries, accounting for almost 1,000 international students. Most of the students come from India, China, Saudi Arabia, and South Korea.

“We globalized, both within the college of business and campus-wide, around the notion that the world is truly at our front door. If our students aren’t ready for that global understanding, we’re not really preparing them for the real world of work,” Smith says. “Employers want a diverse workforce.”

EMU’s college of business offers 32 programs and seven degrees at the undergraduate and graduate levels, including analytics, e-business, entrepreneurship, international business, and nonprofit management.

“The opportunities for students to work on projects with peers from other parts of the world … makes the discussion deeper, and really gives them more of a globalized sense of whatever they’re working on,” Smith says.

“We’re going to continue to recruit international and diverse students, and we want our U.S. students to study abroad, too. We’re doing some work with donors to help offset the cost of a business student who might want to go abroad and (study) in Belgium or South Africa.”

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