International Students Explore Global Experiences at Belk College

Tuesday, August 21, 2018
Global Competitiveness in Latin American Market

In July, students from both Mexico and the U.S. gathered to exchange, expand and experience in an international learning forum like no other.  The popular “Global Competitiveness in Latin American Market” course joined together students traveling from EGADE Business School Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico with students from the Belk College of Business as part of the International Dual-Degree MBA in Global Business and Strategy. The entire dual-MBA program is two and a half years, with this optional, one-week global experiences course being a highlight for many of the students.


The dual-degree students who select the “Global Experiences” course as one of their electives enjoy the benefits of meeting many new contacts during the course.  Students who have their “home base” at EGADE travel together with their instructors to Charlotte. They meet with fellow students and faculty whose “home base” is UNC Charlotte.  Subsequently, the complete group of students are introduced to local business leaders, giving them new relationships in the international business arena.


The annual “Global Experiences” course prepares students, many of whom are already working professionals, to practice, research and debate in a productive, multicultural environment. The MBA students from both schools partner together to dive deeper into global topics, including international trade and competitiveness, foreign direct investment, NAFTA, firm internationalization, emerging country entrepreneurship and more issues that are top-of-mind for the international business community of today. This elective gives students from both partner schools the opportunity to see, participate in and learn the business environment of another culture and nation. Ultimately, they are being trained to directly and positively impact international business with their background, business acumen, broad range of contacts and focus on partnership and corporate responsibility.


In the most recent visit to Charlotte, students from EGADE, along with their faculty and staff (Luis García-Calderón Díaz,Juan Antonio Enciso Gonzalez, and Adriana Hernández) met with their counterpart students from the Belk College of Business at the UNC Charlotte Center City campus.  This particular week was extensively rigorous, providing students the exclusive opportunity to experience first-hand the research, discussion and exposure that is unlike any other program available.  This accelerated course is taught jointly by Rick Conboy, PhD., Associate Professor Emeritus of Management and Luis García-Calderón Díaz, Ph.D, Professor Emeritus of Strategy and International Competitiveness, EGADE Business School.  The broad diversity in the classroom added another layer of benefit for the students, simulating a professional environment.  With participants from varied backgrounds, disciplines, and professional experience levels, the conversation was extremely robust, providing a new perspective on the dynamic intricacies of international business.



Like all the Belk College academic programs, the business community is actively engaged in the curriculum and student experiences.  Fortunately for participating students, this particular “Global Experiences” course included a special presentation that further enhanced that long-held tie with the business community. The students were first introduced to Wayne Cooper, Honorary Consul of Mexico.  Mr. Cooper is the founder of Continental Transfer, LLC dba Telecomm USA and has 35 years experience in international business.   Mr. Cooper then introduced Remedios Gómez Arnau, Consul General of Mexico to the Carolinas.  Gómez Arnau provided the keynote speech to the class, sharing direct insight to the international relations between the United States and Mexico, and the significant impact the Latino community contributes to economic growth locally and nationally, in the billions of U.S. dollars.  Students were honored to hear first-hand from the Consul General about the intersection between business and government, particularly in North and South Carolina, and how she positively impacts international relations through her role.  With her broad experience as a Consulate General in different U.S. locations across the nation since 2001, she brought a wealth of knowledge to the discussion from an extensive background. In addition, Gómez Arnau has conducted research on U.S. foreign policy and the Mexico-U.S. relationship, which provided another layer of depth to her keynote.

Following the keynote presentation, Gómez Arnau was joined by other leadership, including those from Belk College and EGADE Business School, for a business luncheon to celebrate the growing relations. L-R: Christina Sanchez, PhD., Director of International Programs; Tarek Elshayeb, Director of International Student and Scholar Office; Ta-Hsien Dolly King, PhD., Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs; Wayne Cooper, Honorary Consul of Mexico; Remedios Gómez Arnau, Consulate General of Mexico in Raleigh, North Carolina; Rick Conboy, PhD., Associate Professor Emeritus of Management; Luis García-Calderón Díaz, Ph.D-Professor Emeritus of Strategy and International Competitiveness, EGADE Business School; and Juan Antonio Enciso Gonzalez, PhD., Director MBA & MBA in Global Business and Strategy, EGADE Business School.

The students continued to gain benefits during the course through meeting the Latin American Charlotte Chamber of Commerce (LACCC).  An evening networking session allowed students to meet local LACCC leaders. This enhanced their experience by providing personal connections and deepened relationships.  


Following their international travel experiences, students shared feedback and insight:

The opportunity for lasting partnerships is directly evidenced by one of the dual-MBA program alums, Fernando Mayoral Ramírez,  “I was accepted to get into a Marketing and Communications Internship at the Latin American Charlotte Chamber of Commerce. This job gave me the opportunity to get a more real experience in the Latin American and American business community in the U.S.”  



Other students shared:

Both Mr. Conboy and Mr. Garcia-Calderon were some of the greatest professors I have ever had. Their knowledge and enthusiasm are superb!”

“Thoughtful discussion of complex topics like globalization, with real-world examples.  The content and format are both excellent, and the professors care deeply about the material and the students.”

“I loved the interaction between classmates and also with the professors. I liked the group presentations throughout the week and learned a lot from them. I really valued the ice breaking event on Sunday before the class started.”

“I really enjoyed Dr. Conboy and Dr. Calderon class.  They both have a different way of teaching, but the two of them teach clearly the objectives of the class. I liked the groups activities and the activities after classes, such as dinners with the dean or the speaker guests.”



“This course gives you a real in depth learning, teaching and understanding of the global competitiveness environment. Additionally, all exercises were very relevant to today's business environment and useful for day to day job activities. I wished there were more of this courses in the program. Global Competitiveness is very relevant in today's business environment and understanding it and be able to apply best business practices will only make you stronger in your career.”


Clearly, the immersive “Global Experiences” course contributes toward productive partnerships and community impact, both locally and abroad.  The Belk College congratulates participating MBA students on their completion of their rigorous week and wish them the best for the remainder of their program.

EGADE Business School at Tecnologicode Monterrey is the most prestigious business school in Mexico and Latin America due to its global business vision, entrepreneurial and innovative spirit and responsible leadership.  The partnership between EGADE Business School and the UNC Charlotte Belk College of Business is the only one of its kind for the top business school in Latin America. The strong relationship between these two business schools serves as a prime example of the benefits of international cooperation, resulting in exponentially enhanced experience for these students.  This dual-degree program has been developing leaders for over 10 years, demonstrating Belk College’s commitment to its long-term relationship with EGADE.


Remedios Gómez Arnau, Consul General Consulate General of Mexico in Raleigh, North Carolina

Remedios Gómez Arnau, diplomat, was appointed by the President of Mexico and ratified by the Senate as Consul General in Raleigh, North Carolina, taking office on June 16, 2016.

Gómez Arnau has previously headed the Consulate General of Mexico in Atlanta, Georgia and San Diego, California, from 2001 to 2008 and from 2008 to 2016, respectively.

Prior to her tenure in Atlanta, she was the Academic Secretary and Associate Researcher at the Center for Research on North America (CISAN) from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). Her research included U.S. foreign policy and the Mexico-U.S. relationship.

At the Ministry of Foreign Relations (SRE) she has also served as consultant to the Undersecretary for North America in two presidential administrations (1992 to 1997), and has been Director of Consular Protection, Deputy Director of Consular Protection Studies, and Head of the Department of Political and Legal Affairs for the United States (1980-1987).

Gómez Arnau was appointed Technical Secretary for Mexico of the First Binational Study on Migration commissioned by the Government of Mexico and the United States, from 1995 to 1997. She was also invited to participate in the Mexico – U.S. Binational Migration Group organized by the Autonomous Technological Institute of Mexico (ITAM) and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, that in February 2001, presented recommendations to then recently sworn-in Presidents of both countries.

From 1990 to 1992, she served as an external consultant for the Executive Secretariat of the National Commission on Human Rights.

Consul General Gómez Arnau is the author and coordinator of different books and specialized articles. She has a B.A. in International Relations and a Master’s and Ph.D. studies in the same field.