More than 30 students raced across Spain and France during a new study abroad program offered by the University of Nebraska–Lincoln College of Business Administration. Called the Husker Race of Spain and France, part of this program was based on the television show “The Amazing Race” in which students asked local people for assistance, made detours to purchase certain items in basic French or Spanish and captured their experiences on their smart phones.
“This was my first study abroad experience and it was even more amazing than I had expected. Everyone in Spain was so nice. The race was kind of nerve wracking at first, because we didn’t know how the locals would respond, but it got really competitive among the students,” said Angelica Carlini, junior management major from Grand Island, Nebraska. “We also took classes taught by our UNL advisor on the trip J.K. Osiri, (associate professor of practice in management and director of the international business program) which coincided with my management major, and participated in a project-based internship. The trip sparked a new passion for international travel and I hope to visit again soon.”
The program started in Aix-en-Provence, France, where students spent several days staying with host families while getting acclimated to Europe. The students then headed to Valencia, Spain, where they were presented with a consulting project and given their instructions to compete in the Husker Race. The first team to return to the starting point with all the necessary items won the race.
“The program allowed students to explore the cities in a creative way – instead of having regular tours with tour guides, student teams were given handouts containing important monuments and sites and asked to study the material before locating them with the aid of maps,” said Osiri. “It resonated with students and provided them with specific activities to complete and document.”
Winners of the Husker Race were Olivia DeRusse-Charlesworth, junior management major from Papillion, Nebraska; Trevor Burr, junior accounting major from Kenesaw, Nebraska; Nikolai Knezovich, sophomore business administration major from Lincoln, Nebraska; and Tianyi Yao, senior economics major from Beijing, China.
Carlini’s team won the marketing presentation portion of the race, which included a marketing presentation to the CEO of Nievina, a local skin care company. Her team included Mady Pick, junior finance major from Lincoln; Tom Lavin, junior business administration major from Eagan, Minnesota, and Yinye Bao, international business major from Hangzhou, China.
“I learned skills that I could apply to my future job, but also have the freedom to explore new cultures when I wanted,” Carlini said. “Since we had three-day weekends, we were able to visit so many interesting places. I decided to spend a weekend in Rome, where we were able to visit the Vatican, Coliseum, Pantheon, Trevi Fountain and so much more. My family is from Italy, so it was really exciting to see where my family came from.”