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Hong Kong Provides Perspective on Asia for GSPM Students
May 16, 2014
Asia is home to 4.3 billion people and two of the world’s largest emerging markets. Being able to navigate the complex political and economic climates in the region will be essential to future business and civic leaders.
The George Washington University’s Graduate School of Political Management (GSPM), the world’s first and foremost school of applied politics, is helping future leaders figure out ways to most effectively advocate and advance solutions around the world through its Global Perspective courses.
GSPM’s “Engaging Asia” course led a trip to Hong Kong, a Special Administrative Region of China, to explore how to effectively engage the varied cultures and political systems in the region.
Partnering with The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST), GSPM students learned about the political, social, and economic challenges associated with advancing an agenda in Asia. Students had the opportunity to meet and learn from academics at HKUST, senior public affairs strategists, the United States’ Consul General for Hong Kong and Macau Clifford Hart Jr., members of the international media, and Hong Kong Executive Committee Member Bernard Chan.
During a whirlwind five-day trip, students learned about the political and regulatory systems in Hong Kong and in China. Additionally they gathered insights about cultural differences that could help or hinder various advocacy approaches.
GSPM student Ryan Schnepp noted that the trip exposed him to people and perspectives he wouldn’t have acquired in a classroom. “You’re meeting with some of the top business leaders and top political leaders that you would never meet outside of this program,” said Schnepp. “There’s an instant cultural exchange that I think is invaluable,” he added, “If your company has overseas operations or they want someone to go over and set up a shop (a Global Perspective Program) is absolutely one of the best programs out there."
"The course exceeded my expectations. I was surprised by how much I learned in such little time," said GSPM student Elena Kim. "The networking opportunities on the Engaging Asia trip were amazing. Each event got better and better as we went along. Our small group got to meet some of the top political players in Hong Kong and ask them questions in a small group setting."
The school plans to continue sending students to Hong Kong, and is actively exploring other sites in Asia for future Global Perspective Programs. With the launch of the new Advocacy in the Global Environment master’s degree, there will be even more locations to choose from in the near future.