China Adventure with GLP

March 29, 2016
• by
Pooja
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It is the second week back from spring break, and I still have vivid memories from my visit to Shanghai and Beijing through the Global Leadership Program (GLP). For more information about GLP, check out my earlier article (http://marshallmashup.usc.edu/international-opportunities-for-freshman/). Basically, the business related portion of the trip involved us going to visit companies in Shanghai and Beijing, usually set up through some connection to Marshall or our amazing professor, Professor Voigt. Some of my favorites included Mondelez China (the company behind Oreos), Pactics (a smaller manufacturing company with an emphasis on corporate social responsibility and sustainability), and Hyundai Motors (we got to see cars being made!). Overall, the companies we visited ranged across industries, from manufacturing to food to retail, so there was really something interesting for everyone. Also, it was a very new experience since most of us had never set foot inside of a factory, especially the size of a Hyundai factory in which cars are produced every day! Another one of my favorite parts of the trip was when we got to visit Walmart. You'll be surprised at how different Walmart in China is compared to the US because they have the coolest original snacks and unique flavors of brands popular in the US such as Lays and Oreos. I came back with a haul of Chinese snacks to try out, and so far I’m pretty impressed! Speaking of food, one day we visited a food street in Beijing, where there were an array of fun snacks to try. Some of these “fun” snacks included scorpions, snakes and beetles—I opted for a fruit skewer covered in caramelized sugar instead. 20160318_173804 Since we were in China, we had to visit the Great Wall. That was a bucket list item for me, seeing something in real life that I had only seen before on TV and in books. It was just as grand as I pictured, stretching for eternity in both directions. The portion that we went to was famous for the transportation you took to get down—a toboggan! It was surreal, being at the Great Wall of China one instant, sliding down the mountain on a toboggan the next. 20160319_104348 This spring break was definitely one that I will remember for a long time-it was incredibly eye opening and also jam packed with activity. It’s crazy to think in the eight short days we were there, we accomplished so much learning, sightseeing and eating. Now, I am really looking forward to taking advantage of more international opportunities with Marshall in the future.