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Huntsman students get inside Brazilian companies during South America tour

June 21st, 2010 Posted in Business

By Satenik Sargsyan

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRASIL—The team of business students from the Huntsman South America Program completed the Brazilian phase of their trip across the continent this week with vivid business impressions.

USU students visited major corporation in Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paolo, including key international players, such as Petrobras Oil Company, Banco Itau, Johnson and Johnson-Brazil and Natura, where they gained firsthand knowledge of how to maintain a successful business, and explored future international career opportunities.

Student opinions on their experience varied based on the considered factors, such as internship opportunities and gaining knowledge in a particular field. While Banco Itau introduced an internship opportunity specifically designed for USU students, Natura and Johnson&Johnson focused on their internal operations, and PetroBras presented a business plan for potential investors.

“My favorite business visit in Brazil was PetroBras, because as a future investor I feel like it has tremendous potential for success in oil industry due to their new technology in drilling,” said finance and economics senior Nate Bendall. “South America has huge potential for sustainable energy. Brazil, in particular, leveraged itself not to become another statistical failure in the global crisis.”

Gabriel Sanchez, a senior in operations management, is also using the program as an opportunity to make long-term career plans. The immediate interaction with potential employers at Banco Itau is a significant advantage compared to other future professions, Sanchez said.

Banco Itau’s internship program hires two students from USU to live and work in Brazil every year. Students learn how to be professionals outside of the classroom. Sanchez said that the freedom to do his job attracts him the most.

“I am not their dad,” a Banco Itau executive said. “I am their boss. The interns experience the real world where they are expected to do their job. Nobody will babysit them.”

For Stephanie Nielson, Natura and Johnson&Johnson were on the “top of the list.” Both visits included exploring the behind-the-scenes of business operations: needle production at Johnson&Johnson and lipstick production at Natura.

“As consumers in the United States, we don’t realize how many hands work on products we use every day,” Nielson said. “Seeing how much work goes into making one needle or one lipstick made me appreciate the hard work put into it.”

For Trevor Boden, a senior in international business and economics, Johnson&Johnson is a symbol of successful implementation of effective operations management.

“I have worked at different factories in the United States that did not have well-planned operations,” Boden said. “There is nothing more annoying for an employee than not knowing what to do. I can incorporate strategies that J&J is using in my future job to make the operations more effective.”

Next stop: Peru


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