From August 1st through the 19th, 58 students from 7 countries participated in the third International Summer School at BiTS in Iserlohn, Germany. The theme of the 2011 Summer School was Sustainable Mobility.
The majority of the students were from Laureate institutions, with the largest group (45 students strong) coming all the way from Universidad del Valle de México. These students were joined by 5 students from the Universidade Potiguar in Brazil and students hailing from Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas, Istanbul Bilgi University and Universidad Europea de Madrid. The group was complemented by an additional participant from Belgium as well as three more from Germany.
The 2011 Summer School Program featured a number of new elements. A German Survival course gave students a first glimpse of German language and – among other cultural aspects – introduced them to German beer. Students also had the opportunity to exchange ideas on what they found to be "typisch Deutsch" (typical German) through an intercultural workshop, in which they kept a diary with their experiences and observations. On the last day of the Summer School, students presented their findings, and BiTS was pleased to find that the students had developed an impression of Germany as a country that knew how to balance cutting-edge technology with a healthy dose of traditional, warm and fun-loving Gemütlichkeit, and clearly felt how welcome they were here.
A keystone of the program were lectures on subjects such as Sourcing and Supply Chain Management, Innovation and Technology, Quality Management, Sustainable Economics and Green Management, taught by experts with a wealth of experience in those fields.
However, along with a strong academic focus in the classroom, students also enjoyed a hands-on approach to learning. During Excursion Week (2nd week of the program), they added to their knowledge by touring the headquarters of the ADAC, the German Automobile Association, in Landsberg, and gaining insights into the world of BMW in Munich. Visits to Bayer AG in Leverkusen and major local player Kirchhoff Automotive in Iserlohn rounded off the program.
The many positive impressions the students gained and the rewarding feedback they provided have energized planning that has already begun for the next group of globetrotting visitors to the International Summer School of 2012.