St. Mary’s University students from all disciplines will benefit from global initiatives and opportunities offered through a new partnership with the Free Trade Alliance Education Foundation.

This week, the University and the Alliance signed a year-long agreement allowing St. Mary’s students to participate in a variety of unique educational programs, such as mentorship programs, internships, and other networking opportunities, designed to give experience and perspective on issues related to the global trade marketplace. Areas of focus will include global branding, developing and managing a global workforce, entrepreneurship, and corporate responsibility and sustainability. One of the first efforts will be the formation of a Free Trade Alliance Future Global Leaders Coalition student group on campus, which will allow students to prepare business plans for international companies.

“This agreement will provide another avenue to prepare St. Mary’s students to be responsible, knowledgeable leaders who are qualified to excel in the global marketplace,” said Jeffrey Johnson, Ph.D., director of the Center for Global Business Studies in the Bill Greehey School of Business. Johnson noted that the agreement will benefit not only business students, but any students who are interested in learning about global trade. “By partnering with the Free Trade Alliance, our students will have even more opportunities to prepare for and excel in the increasingly international trade marketplace through real-world experiences.”

“The Alliance is excited to collaborate with St. Mary’s University on the Future Global Leaders Coalition, which promotes global awareness and interaction between students. Through the Coalition students will have the opportunity to work with cross-cultural teams to develop a business plan, participate in globally focused internships and develop their leadership skills and global network,” said Kyle Burns, president and CEO of the Alliance. “We have enjoyed a long and successful relationship working with St. Mary’s on internships and various student programs, so the partnership on the Coalition is a natural extension of our relationship.”

The Free Trade Alliance, which is based in San Antonio, is a not for profit public-private organization dedicated to educating and preparing students to compete and thrive in the global marketplace, primarily through its Future Global Leaders Coalition. Since 2007, the Alliance has placed several dozen students from numerous colleges and universities in five countries.

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