Made in Taiwan: An international perspective on choosing JBU
"I was equally impressed with the depth of experience and qualification of the JBU instructors and also energized by the Christian values instilled by JBU"
Monday, July 6, 2015
Joe Hsu is a remarkably humble person. He has so many interesting stories to tell, yet getting him to write a single paragraph about himself can be challenging. He’ll tell me that he isn’t much to talk about, that there are more qualified people out there to write about their experiences. However, I believe that Joe represents the kind of student that JBU has set out to educate, which is why I persisted.
I met Joe in Research Methods last Fall, but I didn’t really get to know him until we both participated in the China International Practicum this year. He turned out to be an invaluable source of Chinese cultural knowledge, especially when it came to relations between China and his home country of Taiwan. During the day our guide would offer the Chinese perspective on their complicated and tumultuous history, and at dinner Joe would clear up any “misunderstandings” with the Taiwanese perspective. In this way Joe multiplied the value of the international experience for everyone on the team.
Everything Joe knows is open for sharing, and he asks nothing in return. Here is just a little bit about what brought Joe to northwest Arkansas and, eventually, to John Brown University.
What led me to John Brown University was a combination of personal goal and searching for new opportunities. On the personal side, I was a mediocre student at best and wanted to prove to myself that I can do better. On the opportunity side, the need for rewarding work piqued my interest; additionally, I wanted to be the first in my family to obtain an MBA.
The education I received in Taiwan was based on rote memory and doing what you’re told. My dislike for school ran deep, and I never excelled academically even though at age 11 my entire family immigrated to the U.S. After finishing college, I spent 17 years working in the family business which gradually became quotidian. Traveling to northwest Arkansas on business, I fell in love with the region and chose to settle in Rogers in 2009. With the relocation and time on my hands, graduate school experience enticed me. Because it was one of my personal goals to get an MBA, I decided to apply.
Getting into the JBU graduate program took some effort, but my initial classes with Professor Susan Thorton and Professor Larry Horton astounded me with the new perspective on business and convinced me that I was where I should be. Furthermore, I was equally impressed with the depth of experience and qualification of the JBU instructors and also energized by the Christian values instilled by JBU, which will be a great foundation for business.
Now with only three more classes until my graduation in 2016, I see myself in a new position with confidence which was reinvigorated by the recent trip to China on the International Practicum. Within the program I witnessed the changing dynamics of global business. I enjoyed the critical learning from the stops we made where it shed light on business practices of today. The practicum also reminded me that constant learning is essential for personal growth.