Global Leadership Program Travels to Costa Rica
Costa Rica recently became a new destination for Schulich’s Global Leadership Program (GLP), which is a 601 alternative that enables MBA students to internationalize their MBA degree by working with real companies, solving business challenges within an international context. This location was chosen due to York University’s presence via the Las Nubes Eco Campus. The Costa Rica project launched with an on-the-ground, eight-day visit by a group of 16 students.
“To effectively embark on a consulting project in a different country, you must understand that country’s culture, customs, and practices,” said Denis Keimakh, (MBA/JD Candidate ’23). “The GLP program in Costa Rica allowed me to immerse myself in local culture and experiences, equipping me with the tools needed to offer value to my 601 Company.”
The goal for students was to research and analyze all aspects of a Costa Rican company, with a focus on local and international context and, importantly, the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Financial support through the York SDG in Action 2000 fund and the Schulich Travel Bursary was provided.
Students spent time travelling through the countryside, visiting the Las Nubes Eco Campus and immersing themselves in the local community via homestay accommodations, trekking through the rainforest, and studying local companies with whom they’ll continue to work with over the next six months, which included a pig farm, a fishery and a biostimulant company. In each case, the companies are seeking ways to improve their operations and expand their markets regionally and globally. The students are doing extensive market research, operational audits and competitor analyses to identify the best avenues forward for their clients.
“It was a holistic experience with the right balance of work and fun. We understood the Costa Rican lifestyle and their close ties with their natural ecosystems, which eventually helped us better understand our clients and their goals and challenges,” said Swathi Kalaivani Alagaraj, (MBA Candidate ’23). “We returned wiser, with many shared memories and a refreshed enthusiasm to deliver the best to our clients.”