The Global Training Initiative at NC State hosted 25 of the top graduate students from Japan’s Nagoya University. These students took part in a two-week immersion program that included lectures on innovation, entrepreneurship, and technology transfers. They also presented their research at companies and organizations around the Triangle while networking with the research and professional community at NC State and in the Triangle.
“The program gave me an opportunity to experience the American culture of conducting research and doing business,” said one of the student participants.
The Nagoya University students met with NC State faculty from the College of Education, Poole College of Management, and the Graduate School. The students also toured the Entrepreneurship Inititative’s Garage and met with current NC State students who are launching their own businesses.
NC State’s Career Development Center also coordinated site visits around the Triangle. Nagoya University students engaged with researchers and employees at companies like Syngenta, Advanced Energy, RTI International, Eisai Pharmaceuticals, Nitta Gelatin, and Grassroots Biotechnology.
The two-week program also included site visits to the Biofuels Center of North Carolina, the NC Department of Commerce, Carrboro High School, Duke University, UNC-Chapel Hill, and a weekend trip to Washington, DC.
“This type of immersive experience gives international students a glimpse of what makes the university and its government and industry partners so successful,” said GTI Director Michael Bustle. “We hope this is the start of a deepening partnership with Nagoya University that will open up opportunities for NC State students to travel, research, study, or participate in internships in Japan.
Click here to see a short video about the two-week program.
Below are more pictures from the Nagoya University Program at NC State:
Christelle Reynaud normally has her hands full with school work while she’s studying at NC State University this semester at the SKEMA Business School’s US campus. She never imagined those same hands would also be filled with young children.
“When I entered into the room, a little girl just jumped on me. She did not know me at all, but she just wanted to be in my arms,” Reynaud recounted. “I grabbed her and she fall asleep in my arms. It was such an emotional moment for me.”
Reynaud spends her Wednesday afternoons at the Child Development Center (CDC) of a local nonprofit, the Raleigh Rescue Mission. She goes with two other NC State students: Leigh-Kathryn Bonner and Katie Latta. The CDC provides a safe and comforting environment for children living at the Raleigh Rescue Mission, a shelter and community center for homeless individuals and families. Reynaud and her friends spend the afternoon playing with children who are between the ages of 2 and 4. She’s discovered that being French helps her connect with the children, noting how they laugh at the “funny way” she pronounces certain words.
“One of the girls told me that she loved my accent,” she recalled.
Reynaud’s experience is just one of the many volunteer, cultural, and academic events made available to students taking part in the Global Training Initiative’s International Cultural Leadership Project (ICLP). There are more than 400 domestic and international students from NC State University and SKEMA Business School who are participating in the program this semester. Most of the events are organized by the GTI, but participants are also encouraged to find activities and events that interest them. The students make a big difference in the Triangle, having already logged 63 hours of community service in one month.
“This type of student-led engagement in the Triangle is exactly what makes the ICLP so innovative and exciting,” said Kristine Sloan, the ICLP Program Specialist. “We’re really glad to see the students creating new experiences for themselves and giving back to the community in such a positive way.”
These experiences have also had a major impact on the participants themselves.
“I felt so blessed to meet these children,” Reynaud said. “We say that everyone is equal at birth, but it is not true. These children live in precarious situations, but they do not complain about that. This center gives them the possibility to have a regular childhood and keep them safe. Seeing them playing, smiling, and running really made my day. I know I did not do a lot for them, but I feel like I helped them, at least, on a small scale.”
Check out the scenes from other volunteer events held in January and February 2013: