Becoming a Better Global Citizen
PROVO, Utah – May 06, 2020 – Whether he’s kayaking to waterfalls in Croatia or exploring the sites of Dubai, Tanner Wegrowski loves to experience the world. Completing an internship in Berlin and participating in BYU Marriott’s Global Marketing Study Abroad has convinced Wegrowski that everyone should have international experiences. He believes these experiences are an invaluable way to gain an appreciation for and broader perspective of the world in which we live.
“I’m passionate about having cross-cultural experiences and becoming more in tune with my role as a global citizen,” says Wegrowski, a global supply chain management senior from Temecula, California. Wegrowski solidified his interest in international business while working as a student administrator for BYU Marriott’s Whitmore Global Management Center (GMC).
Wegrowski enjoyed working for the GMC because the experience allowed him to see the effect an international business education has on students. “I saw the impact of the GMC on students who were freshmen all the way up to seniors who were graduating with a certificate in global management,” he says. “That impact included an increase in cultural intelligence and the ability to handle situations where there are cross-cultural interactions.”
In summer 2018, Wegrowski was able to experience that impact for himself when he attended BYU Marriott’s Global Marketing Study Abroad. While abroad, Wegrowski traveled to countries such as Poland, Austria, Germany, Italy, the United Arab Emirates, South Africa, Thailand, and China. In each country, Wegrowski visited and met with leaders from top companies.
He especially enjoyed the opportunity to meet with representatives from BMW because the time spent at the automaker campus changed his perspective of the global market. “This is a global world that we live in,” says Wegrowski. “The United States is not the entirety of it. There is more to the business world than what happens here at home.”
During summer 2019, Wegrowski lived in Berlin for four months with his wife, Ashley, as he completed an internship with WINS Global Consult, an international-development consulting firm. Through his internship, Wegrowski worked on projects such as teaching the people in Ghana how to use business-intelligence tools and working with governments of municipalities in Bosnia and Herzegovina on how to best instigate small-business entrepreneurs. “Learning from people who are from different cultures and having cross-cultural interactions helped me learn in ways that a classroom couldn’t,” says Wegrowski.
A unique opportunity Wegrowski had while working in Germany was being on a team composed of people from different countries around the world. “We all came from such different backgrounds, but when we worked together, we realized that we had a lot more in common than we thought,” says Wegrowski. “I enjoyed forming those relationships.” This experience made him more keenly aware of cultural intelligence and how cultural intelligence is necessary to operate in a workplace with different people of different backgrounds.
Wegrowski is grateful for his experiences abroad and recommends everyone take any chance they have to travel internationally. “If someone were to leave the country, even for a little bit, and get to know people from a different part of the world, that experience would impact their perspective,” says Wegrowski. “Being exposed to ideas that are different than ours can be an intellectually enlarging experience.”
Though paying for international experiences can be challenging, assistance is available. Wegrowski encourages people to look into the scholarships and grants that BYU and BYU Marriott provide. Each experience he had abroad was subsidized through those resources, and Wegrowski believes that if students take advantage of those resources, they can find significant funding for global opportunities as well.
In December 2020, Wegrowski will be graduating from BYU Marriott. He enjoyed his experience with WINS Global Consult so much that he has decided to pursue a career in consulting postgraduation. Looking back at his time at BYU Marriott, Wegrowski is appreciative for all the opportunities that he has been given. “I’m grateful for my experiences abroad, and to BYU and BYU Marriott for providing me with those opportunities,” says Wegrowski. “I wouldn’t have been able to have seen the world without them.”
Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Natalie Heidemann