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Professor connects in China

Ruth Lumb, professor of business, understands the value of maintaining connections.

This summer, Lumb was invited as a distinguished guest to Chongqing Technology and Business University in Chongqing, China, for its 60th anniversary celebration.

“Like most Chinese celebrations, there were a lot of dignitaries and speeches, a lot of food and a lot of fireworks,” Lumb said. “It was a humbling experience.”

But this wasn’t Lumb’s first trip to the university. She first developed a connection in 1989 when she was invited as the first foreign visitor to the university.

CTBU was just starting to develop a school of business and Lumb was there to help.

“One of my tasks was to teach marketing, management and business in general to the professors because this was getting into a new area,” Lumb said. “And another task was to work with the vice-president and president to help set up a curriculum for business.”

The university has since expanded its school of business and made changes to the curriculum, but Lumb remains connected.

“I also later brought the first international and foreign students to campus,” she added. “I go back every year and visit.”

Lumb’s connections to the university have not only been beneficial for her, but have also provided many opportunities for MSUM students in the school of business.

Almost every year, Lumb and other faculty members take students on a three-and-a-half to four week China business trip. One of the main places they visit and interact with other students during the trip is at CTBU.

Many of the students develop connections and stay in contact with Chinese students long after the trip.

“We also now have an exchange agreement with CTBU, so any student from MSUM that would be interested in spending a semester or year there has that opportunity,” Lumb said. “It’s a big deal for the school of business because we’re committed to getting our students to see the global aspect and broaden their horizons.”

Lumb understands the importance of developing and maintaining connections as a student, as well as the importance of seeing things from a different view.

“Your competition as a student is no longer just students from MSUM or NDSU,” she said. “With technology, your competition comes from throughout the world. You can’t go to every country around the world, but if you can just find somebody from another country and look at it from their perspective, I feel that you will have a competitive advantage.”


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