Neeley to start South Korea study abroad program

The Korea University Business School and the Neeley School of Business are joining together to provide TCU’s first partner exchange program in Asia for undergraduates, said professors in the business school.

The exchange will start in spring 2009, said Steve Lim, an associate professor of accounting and an alumnus of Korea University.

He said as long as there is a demand for students to study abroad, the business school will work to integrate the program. Lim said the school has sophomores and juniors in mind to study abroad, but the option is open to all business majors. Sixty-five percent of the classes are offered in English, according to Korea University’s Web site.

Garry Bruton, a professor of management and president of the Asia Academy of Management, said while on business in Korea in December, he and Lim were able to visit Korea University to discuss establishing a relationship with TCU.

Bruton said Korea University is a leading business school in Asia and has a strong research faculty, including alumnus Lee Myung-bak, South Korea’s current president. He said it is a private university like TCU but has a higher application rate. Korea University has an enrollment of more than 30,000, according to its Web site, and the country boasts the world’s 16th-largest gross domestic product, according to the CIA World Factbook.

“It is a great opportunity for students to experience a rapidly expanding region of the world,” Bruton said.

According to its Web site, Korea University was founded in 1905 and was the first business school in Korea. The university has 56 business school partnerships in 22 countries.

Korea University has exchange programs with six BusinessWeek top-50 undergraduate schools not counting TCU including the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Southern California, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the University of Washington, Binghamton University and the University of Florida.

Griffin Guthneck, a sophomore finance and international economics major, said he expressed interest and signed up for the exchange program because of the growing economy, cultural diversity and ability to transfer business hours back to TCU.

“A large number of people at TCU study in Europe, but it would be cool to study somewhere that not as many people get to,” Guthneck said.

Siri Terjesen, assistant professor of management, said she has taught and traveled throughout Asia and hopes students use the opportunity to learn different cultural activities.

“When students go on to be successful in the business world, they will more than likely cross paths with Korea, so it would be good to know its business approaches,” Terjesen said.