The International Business Administration (IBA) program is an all-English undergraduate degree program that introduces students to important themes in global business and leadership. This program offers a diverse curriculum of business courses with an emphasis on fostering global awareness and cross-cultural communication. The IBA program is the first degree program to come out of Tunghai’s International College, which was established with the goal of creating an academic environment where students and staff expose one another to diverse cultures, languages, and perspectives. In order to foster these cross-cultural experiences and exchanges, the International College brings in recent graduates from foreign universities to act as Mentors for the students, and invites foreign professors to teach various courses during a spring mini-mester. Students of the IBA program will gain a multifaceted understanding of global trends in business, economy, culture, and the arts, all in an international learning environment. Through language and multicultural immersion, students will learn about different cultures and global issues, and gain the skills to help them develop into leaders in business and management.
I have taught in Taiwan for more than 30 years and during that time I have seen many changes, especially in education. Nowadays, students have a wide variety of choices and opportunities. With all these choices, what makes the International Business Administration (IBA) Program in the International College unique? There are three unique advantages to the IBA Program at Tunghai: 1) a high quality program, 2) an international experience, and 3) a mentor program.
Our Bachelor of Science degree in International Business Administration is composed of the traditional content courses found in most business programs. However, a unique feature is the Global Leadership (GL) Honors Program. The goal of the GL courses is to enhance students’ international awareness and global vision. Through coursework, public lectures, and special events and activities in an international atmosphere, students will gain a multi-faceted, factual, and first-hand understanding of global trends in business, economy, culture, and the arts. The GL program is designed to be completed in the first two years of study. These courses will also transfer as some of the General Education requirements at Trinity University, the University of Rhode Island, and others, as part of Tunghai’s 2 + 2 Programs.
The teachers, students, and study overseas opportunities create a unique international experience for students in the International College. The faculty of the International College is composed of both local and international teachers, and at the end of each spring semester, we invite American professors to come to Tunghai to teach during our Mini-mester. Also, a quarter of the student population (degree-seeking and exchange students) are from overseas (14 different countries). This combination of teachers and students creates a truly international environment. Moreover, the university has numerous exchange and double degree programs with leading universities around the world.
The most unique feature of the International College is the Mentor Program. Each incoming class has an American mentor who helps students make the transition from high school to independent learners. They review the basic topics that were covered weekly by required and GL courses. They also help students with personal and academic problems, as well as facilitate communication between teachers, students, and parents through a monthly newsletter. They also host cultural activities and help students with their international exchange and college applications. Simply, they ensure that students are off to a good start on the road to success.