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Strathclyde Business School Strathclyde Business School

Welcome to Scotland: Entrepreneurship and Irn-Bru

By Jael Whitney - Posted on 20 August 2015

Strathclyde Business School recently hosted three students from the Fulbright-Scotland Summer Institute.  This five-week placement is part of the US-UK Fulbright Commission, a treaty that aims to produce mutual cultural understanding through educational exchange between both countries.  The global programme operates in more than 150 countries and has produced more than 300,000 alumni.  It’s recognised as a very prestigious programme with 28 alumni serving as head of state or government, 43 winning a Nobel Prize and 78 receiving a Pulitzer Prize.  Jael Whitney shares her experience of visiting Strathclyde Business School below.

My name is Jael Whitney. I’m currently starting my second year studying marketing at Kansas State University in the United States, but this summer I crossed the ocean to study at the University of Strathclyde as part of the Fulbright-Scotland Summer Institute. Before coming here, I had a few scattered ideas about Scotland, but I think Shakespeare’s famous quote summarizes my newfound perception of Scotland quite well: “And though she be but little, she is fierce.”

My time here has made me realize how much of a dynamic player in business and technological innovation this country is. A great deal of this perception came from my time at Strathclyde Business School and in particular the Technology & Innovation Centre. By intersecting the lines of research, policy, and business, the TIC gives a sense of expertise and modernity to the entire campus.

During our programme here, we had two sessions run by the Strathclyde Business School, both of which helped us to come to see the University as a leader in the field of business innovation. The first was a lecture on Social Enterprise and Entrepreneurship by Dr Niall Mackenzie from the Hunter Centre of Entrepreneurship and Mr Bernd Wurth, tutor of Management Science. Before this session, I didn’t even know what social enterprise was, but through the process of coming up with our own socially innovative company as a team, I came out of the lecture with an entirely new idea of how to do business.

The other session we had that provided me with a new way of thinking about Scotland and business was our tour to the Irn-Bru factory with Dr Alex Dickson, professor of Economics and Johnathan Kemp, Commercial Director of AG Barr PLC. Not only did I gain a better insight into Scottish culture from the advertisements that we watched, but I also learned about the unique branding techniques that Irn-Bru uses to keep itself number one in the market of Scotland, even above the world-leading Coca-Cola. I am very fortunate to have had this opportunity to see Scotland and global business in a new light.

To find out more information about the programmes run through the US-UK Fulbright Commission, click here.

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