Gustavus Adolphus College has a nearly 50-year history in helping students study away. The Center for International and Cultural Education provides many services to make this experience a good one. We look forward to working with you.
"Choosing to study abroad is one of the best decisions that I have ever made. The experience helped me challenge myself to become more independent and broadened my view of the world and other cultures."
Caitlin Bayer, '14, Psychological Science major
Program: DIS Psychology, Spring 2013; January off-campus course Sport Ethics in Australia and New Zealand, January 2012
Rudy Gulstrand entered Gustavus with the class of '61, then went to Pharmacy School at the University of Minnesota. Eventually he earned an MBA while working in the pharmaceutical/chemical industry, and spent 20 years in business development, marketing, and sales in international markets. Here he reflects on a pivotal experience early in his career which shaped his ultimate career path. His story reminds us that study away and international travel can profoundly affect us physically, emotionally, and professionally! (If you'd like to reach Mr. Gulstrand to learn more about his career, contact CICE.)
China Awakening: 1983
"As I boarded a train in Nanning, China in 1983, having just received back my passport from my Chinese hosts, I realized I had some time to reflect on what I had seen in my initial two days in China. Nanning is the Capitol city in Guangxi Province in southern China. In 1983 cars were almost nonexistent; instead bicycles and an occasional motor scooter were seen. Bicycles were everywhere and crowded the streets. The dress was almost a uniform. Men wore medium blue jackets and matching light weight pants often accompanied by the blue cap with short bill and red star on the front. I watched the terrain we passed through as the train pulled away from the station, attaining its maximum travel speed of 35 miles per hour. Flat rice paddies with an occasional rock outcropping. Workers in the fields with their water buffalo. They would watch as the train passed, always with a bright smile. After almost six hours the train arrived at my destination in Liuzhou, China. My room was in a very small inn without air conditioning (the outdoor temperature in June was normally in the high nineties). I arose in the morning for a short jog before meeting my hosts. As I jogged along a narrow street I heard some movement behind me. To my amazement I saw 20-25 Chinese running along behind me with their characteristic smiles.They had never seen a westerner before! Two days later I finished my business of introducing some technology of interest to a zinc oxide producer in Luizhou. The mental pictures I took during this one short week, of the countryside, the people, and their smiles, drew me in to an extremely rewarding career in international business."