MBA 550:  The European Business Environment

Course Overview 

This is a 3 credit MBA elective course that will include an online component and a travel component.  The course will explore business opportunities and challenges in the European Union.  We will visit EU institutions in Brussels as well as meet with business and academic professionals in France, Germany, and the Czech Republic.  We will also visit sites of cultural interest.  There will be some preliminary readings assigned, some online discussions in preparation for the trip, and a term paper due after the conclusion of the trip. 

          Anticipated Travel Itinerary 

Friday, June 1: Depart for the airport. This is very flexible and will be tailored to where each participant lives for easy access to a convenient airport. Fly to Prague.

Saturday, June 2: Arrive in Prague. Prague city tour, brewery tour.

Sunday, June 3: Museum of Communism, free afternoon and evening in Prague.

Monday, June 4:  Skoda automobile factory tour.  Toyota factory tour and/or Aero Vodochodny (aerospace firm) factory tour.

Tuesday, June 5: Train to Berlin, tour of Berlin

Wednesday, June 6: Meet with US expatriates/IT entrepreneurs in Berlin, BMW motorcycle plant tour

Thursday, June 7: Flight to Paris, sightseeing in Paris

Friday, June 8: Train to Brussels.  Visit EU institutions in Brussels, including EU Parliament. Plant tour of Manon Chocalatier.  Dinner in authentic Belgian restaurant and tour of the Grand’Place.  Free time in Brussels

Saturday, June 9: Bike tour of Paris and meeting with New Zealand and American entrepreneurs (founders of bike tour company).

Sunday, June 10: Free day in Paris.

Monday, June 11: Return to Harrisburg/Shippensburg. 

We will be staying in 3-star or better hotels with double occupancy. If you would like a private room, there will be an additional $600 fee. Some breakfasts and at least two dinners will be included.  Several lunches and other dinners will be organized as plans get finalized.  For all other meals, participants will be responsible for paying separately, although additional meals as a group are very likely depending on the final budget.  

           Course Budget and Costs (per person)

Round trip airfare to Europe                 $600

Lodging                                                       $600

European Transportation                      $500

Some Meals and Misc. expenses        $400

Total Travel Expense                            $2100 

In-State Tuition & Fees                         $1884

Total Expense                                        $3984 

Spouses or other non-student traveling companions are welcome and will be responsible only for the travel expense of $2100.  If expenses turn out to be less than expected, extra money will be allocated for meals and/or other extra activities during the trip.  If expenses turn out to be higher than anticipated, some additional payment may be necessary (but this has never happened in the history of the trip). 

Payment Schedule and Details

You will be required to make four separate payments to the Office of Extended Studies.  These payments are non-refundable once they have been made.

                                                       

February 15: $1000   |   March 1: $600   |   April 1: $500

As the headquarters to the EU (European Union) and NATO, Brussels is often referred to as The Capital of Europe. It is an international metropolis – a mosaic of languages, cultures, and traditions. Aside from the splendid and varied architectural styles of the city, Brussels also hosts over 80 museums, numerous tourist attractions, a vibrant nightlife, and more restaurants than you could count.

Berlin is thriving as a competitive business location. The city’s outstanding infrastructure, its large and highly qualified workforce, and its excellent colleges, universities, and research institutions are major reasons motivating companies to locate here. Once an industrial city, Berlin is on the way to becoming a modern center of service providers and technology startups.  Berlin has a thriving arts scene and is a hub for expatriates from many different countries.  Of course, Berlin is also full of sights of recent and more distant historical significance.

Matička Praha - 'little mother Prague' - was largely undamaged by WWII, and the cityscape is stunning. Its compact medieval centre remains an evocative maze of cobbled lanes, ancient courtyards, dark passages and churches beyond number, all watched over by an 1100-year-old castle.

Kidnapped by communism for 40 years, Prague has become one of Europe's most popular tourist destinations. Its traditional pubs and eateries have been augmented by a wave of gourmet restaurants, cocktail bars and trendy cafes - though you can still feast on pork and dumplings washed down with a beer. 

Doing business in the Czech Republic has passed through stages reminiscent of the Gold-rush to those of consolidation and a general nervousness, on to major expansion and reaping the rewards of early investment up until now when the political situation is in turmoil but the economy is still strong with a new market hungry for every new product or service.

The “City of Lights”--Paris is the heart, and in many ways, the soul of continental Europe.  Rich in history, culture, and architecture—you will never be lacking for something interesting to see or do during your visit.  Walk down the Champs Elysees, visit the Cathedral of Notre Dame, admire the artistic treasures in the Louvre, or just sit in an outdoor café and take in the ambiance.