Asia, Engaged

In the two weeks prior to school starting this fall, a significant portion of Oregon MBA students took a trip to Asia in an effort to learn about a foreign business culture. A prerequisite for this trip was taking a class called “Global Business Environments”. While I learned a great deal about many business cultures from that class, this pales in comparison to what I learned about Asia on just the first few days on this trip. This really speaks to the importance of getting out of the classroom and truly experiencing the culture.

What I will remember from this trip:

  • The juxtaposition of Chinese culture – it is hard to get used to seeing Prada stores and Ferrari dealerships next to crumbling housing developments.
  • The culture of sport in China – Only a handful of children are selected to pursue sports (for Olympic development) while most end up devoting 100% of their time to education or vocational skills. This means that there isn’t a big sports culture among the majority of the Chinese population because they didn’t grow up playing sports like we do. However, this is slowly changing, recreational basketball courts are springing up everywhere.
  • The utopian nature of Singapore – still wheezing from my time in Beijing, Singapore was literally a breath of fresh air. Due to the nature of being a city-state, Singapore has developed into a economic hub for Southeast Asia. And as such, the country has strict laws about cleanliness and many other matters that helps maintain a very western culture despite its location.
  • The impressive quality and quantity of meetings – our agenda was packed with meetings with some amazing people; David Shoemaker (CEO, NBA China), Larry Namer (founder of E! Network), Ian Charles Stewart (Wired magazine cofounder), Cheah Kim Teck (CEO, Singapore Sports Council), Chris Renner (CEO, Helios Partners), and the list could go on.

Needless to say, my time in Asia was an amazing experience. From bonding with classmates, to shaking hands with business leaders on the other side of the world, everything exceeded my expectations. It almost made me want to work in China. Almost.


Written by Foster Boone

Foster is a second year MBA student in the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center. He joined the Oregon MBA program after five years in the advertising industry. He hopes to apply his professional experience and academic learning to a brand management role upon completion of the program. When he is not thinking about marketing he is usually giving into his inner nerd or his inner athlete, depending on the weather.

Warsaw Class of 2014: Midterms and Movember

Week #6 of Fall term is officially in the books, and the first year MBA students breathed a collective sigh of relief after successfully completing our first round of graduate school midterms. This term we are taking Financial Accounting, Quantitative Methods for Managers, Fundamentals of Finance, Managing Individuals and Organizations, Marketing Management, and a one-credit hour Sports Business Seminar. Taking six classes has challenged us, but being able to establish a strong foundation in the core business disciplines at the beginning of the program is extremely valuable.

When not studying this week, we had the opportunity to attend a sports marketing career panel sponsored by the Lundquist College of Business Career Services team on Monday night. Alumni panelists representing several prominent sports companies and agencies, such as Nike, Adidas and Wieden and Kennedy were in attendance. The discussion primarily focused on the concept of networking, which is a vital skill to develop for anyone hoping to break into the sports industry. The panelists offered a lot of practical networking and job search tips and advice that students in our class will be able to put into practice when we begin applying for summer internship opportunities over the next few months.

On Tuesday afternoon, we were fortunate enough to receive a visit from sports executive Andy Dolich during our Sports Business Seminar. Dolich has worked in the front offices of the Philadelphia 76ers, Washington Capitals, Oakland Athletics, Memphis Grizzlies and San Francisco 49ers, among others, and currently runs his own sports consultancy organization. Dolich began by conducting a Jeopardy-style sports quiz during which he handed out paraphernalia to the students with correct answers. He then touched on a wide range of subjects, from current issues in each of America’s main sports, to the future of professional women’s sports and the biggest areas for growth in sports across the globe, and wrapped things up with a Q&A session. For us, it was a fantastic opportunity to gain insight from someone who has a vast amount of knowledge and experience in the professional sports world.

Thursday marked the start of “Movember”, an international campaign in which men grow moustaches during the month of November to raise awareness and funds for men’s health, specifically prostate and testicular cancer research. You can read more about “Movember” here: The University of Oregon is very active in this initiative, and two Warsaw students, Mitzi Ing and Dylan Packebush, are co-chairs for the university’s efforts. On Sunday, Sigma Nu fraternity is hosting a kickball tournament as a “Movember” fundraiser. Last year, MBA teams finished in first and second place in the tournament, so we plan to defend the title and have a great time this weekend! Keep checking the blog for more “Movember” updates as well as recaps of some outstanding speaker panels and events we have planned for the remainder of the term!

-Dan Hall and Perry Hammond, Warsaw Sports Marketing Center, Class of 2014

Written by Dan Hall

Dan is a member of Oregon MBA Class of 2014 concentrating his studies within the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center.