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MSU students part of 100,000 strong in China

Dan Redford (’10, James Madison)

Amway and Coca-Cola partner with MSU

Two corporations have turned to MSU in order to join the U.S. State Department’s “100,000 Strong” initiative, inspired by President Barack Obama’s vision of 100,000 American students studying abroad in China. Thirty MSU students will participate in study abroad programs focused on Chinese language, business and culture, through a $200,000 grant from the Coca-Cola Foundation. Direct selling giant Amway will fund an additional 15 scholarships for students to live and study in China via other MSU Study Abroad programs.

“Through the richness and diversity found within Chinese cultures, our students will learn how cultural traditions, history and language affect global business practices within the United States and Michigan,” says Brett Berquist, executive director of MSU’s Office of Study Abroad.

Past participant Dan Redford (’10, James Madison) agrees. He is now director of China operations at RCI FirstPathway Partners, a global business program that helps foreign investors become U.S. citizens.

“What is most important to me is that, through interaction with Chinese people, I understand that I am never going to have all the answers, and it will be up to me to forge relationships with people that can show me the way,” Redford says. “Behind every difference there lies a chance to learn a new perspective, a chance to become familiarized with a different solution to a common problem.”

MSU ranks No. 1 among public institutions for study abroad participation with more than 270 programs on all continents and in more than 60 countries.