By Tom Rutkowski, Professor, Business Administration

One of the first positive attributes that I feel international students bring to our classrooms is the ability to take risks. I was sent by our government to Russia as a volunteer consultant in 1996, 2000, and 2001. As I was getting ready the first time, for about 3 weeks in Moscow and then Novosibirsk, I was apprehensive, maybe a little worried. And, I was about twice the age of the international students who come great distances to study a semester or an entire academic career at Castleton! I respect all international students for their courage to try something and some place new.  I love seeing how the international students that are in my classes “grow” as they are here. Sometimes that growth is with their English, other times it can be at learning our culture, but it has always been a positive growth.

Finally, I find the international students to be well prepared with their academics when they arrive. I look forward to contacting one of them (Elnura Alinova) who was here in the fall semester. She has agreed to serve as a “correspondent” from her home and her school, sharing with me and with my BUS 3245 Global Marketing class such information as what American products she sees at home, what she feels we could trade with businesses in her country, how our school differs from hers at home, and how we can learn from the people in her country.

Thank you, international students, for sharing with us!