By Geni Rupley, MBA’23, Senior Biomedical Engineer, R&D at AtriCure, Inc.
I’ve always valued interactive learning. It’s the primary driver that encouraged me to join the Kelley Direct online MBA program in February 2021. As a biomedical engineer, many business principles were new to me. I wanted opportunities that challenged me to actively apply the concepts. I’m grateful that I received multiple chances throughout my time at Kelley, including this Italy immersion. This was my last class with KD and the perfect way to end my graduate career journey. The global immersion provided a balanced itinerary of client consulting, cultural experiences, and time to socialize and network with classmates and faculty.
Client Consulting: Bortolomiol was a professional client who enthusiastically welcomed us into their facility and taught us about the prosecco industry. We got to authentically learn about their business through a facility and vineyard tour, tastings, and interactions with their employees. Before we arrived, they provided us with a clear problem statement. I didn’t feel restricted on the direction we could take to come up with a solution. Our objective was to expand brand awareness and sales of Bortolomiol’s DOCG prosecco in the US. During the final presentations, our sponsors, Luana and Flora, listened intently and were fully engaged, asking thoughtful questions. Their open-mindedness allowed for a great presentation experience. It was also fun to listen to the other groups, as we all provided unique and different solutions.
Cultural Immersions: We took part in many cultural experiences, including a pizza-making class, a pasta-making class, a day trip to Padua, group dinners, Villa di Maser tour, and more. In Padua, I visited the Basilica of St. Anthony and a botanical garden, went shopping at local markets, and toured the University of Padua with the group. The town we stayed in, Asolo, is small and allowed for a more authentic experience. Every night we had the opportunity to explore on our own and have dinner with each other. Overall, I loved experiencing the history and local cuisine in Italy.
Networking: Throughout this immersion, I had plenty of time to get to know my classmates and professors. I appreciated this aspect the most, and I left the trip feeling energized. The group dynamics were fun and welcoming. The chance to socialize and interact with so many people, including the locals, was unforgettable. I look forward to staying in touch with the group.
A special thank you to Susan, Jenni, Quentin, and my classmates for an incredible trip!