Professor of Business Dr. Randy Nutter made his first trip to China in 1999. He taught a summer-long course for Chinese business managers and government officials as part of the Pacific Institute for Business and Management Applications (PIBMA), a subsidiary of the English Language Institute of China. After returning to the U.S., he continued to teach global strategic management courses in addition to his work at Geneva College. But something inside him was calling to go back to China.
Nutter’s translator during the time he taught with PIBMA was a faculty member of Southeast University in Nanjing, China. He contacted her and expressed his interest in putting together a partner-style program that would be available to business students from Geneva College. She connected him with Southeast’s dean of management and the dean of students, who had been hoping for some time to start a global program for U.S. undergraduates and an MBA program instructed in English.
When Southeast finally received government approval for the program, Nutter got a phone call. He recalls the conversation: “‘We know you’re a Christian and that’s fine,’ they told me. ‘We would really like you to teach some management classes for us.’”
Nutter wanted Geneva College students to share the rich learning environment China had to offer, and opened the program to those interested in global business. Southeast informed the college that any students interested in the global MBA program would receive a full scholarship. In addition to covering all tuition, room and board expenses, fees, books, the scholarship includes a monthly $200 stipend.
In September of 2008, Nutter took three Geneva College students to Nanjing to check out the facilities. One of them was Tyler Marwood, who stayed in China for the fall semester to complete his special business concentration. Nutter later returned to teach the MBA global human resources class, which included Geneva graduates Jaimie Jabaut and Justin Miller (recipients of the Chinese scholarship offer), as well as 30 other students from 24 different nations.
“It was great,” Nutter says. “When I do classes like this, we talk about understanding corporate cultures, the values system that a business operates by. We teach students that a strong corporate culture will lead to consistent behavior within the organization. For example, as Christians, what we believe translates into what we do in business. This allows us to describe the gospel as an example of how beliefs affect actions.”
Southeast is a secular university, but Nutter says there are many opportunities for Geneva College students to live as a testimony to Christ’s power. “The Chinese notice that our students behave differently from other American groups. They are attracted to the kids, they have provided scholarships, and they asked us to come back in the spring.”
Nutter has retired from full-time teaching at Geneva, but will continue to teach as a guest professor in the global MBA program.
China Experience 2009
“We’re looking for students, alumni and friends of the college who would like to go to China for two weeks to see what is really happening there,” Dr. Nutter says. For the last two summers, Geneva College students have made this China Experience a success, and Dr. Nutter will lead the third trip in May 2009.
The trip will include formal classes taught in English by Chinese faculty; accommodations in a hotel, meals, and ground transportation to and from sites. The trip counts for three credit hours transferred from Southeast University for doing Chinese studies, and as Humanities 304 or Business 316 from Geneva College.
For more information, contact the Crossroads Center for Off-Campus Studies at 724-847-6737.
Students have opportunities for enrichment and networking through Geneva’s Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) chapter.