alumni, Darden Worldwide Course

Reflections from Russia

By Kate Beach-

Students shared their thoughts on Darden’s Worldwide Course to Russia, which just concluded last week.

Maureen Keegan (Class of 2017) on the Darden Student-Alumni Reception in Moscow:

Darden students and alumni connect in Moscow.

On Monday evening, we had the opportunity to attend a reception at the beautiful Stand Art Hotel on Pushkin Square. The hotel welcomed us with pictures of luscious green lawns of Darden in the middle of 10 degrees below zero Russian Winter. We chatted with prospective Darden students, Darden alumni and some of the business leaders we’ll be meeting with throughout our time in Moscow and St. Petersburg. It was great to share our experiences with the prospective students and hear the alumni reminisce about their time at Darden. We also enjoyed being able to learn more about living and doing business in Russia from all our guests while also sampling some local cuisine.

Several anonymous students on the Darden Worldwide Course program academic content and visits:

Small group discussions during a class session in Russia.

“[This program] has given me a complete understanding of what is going on in Russia, how companies survive there and what is the attitude that a business person should take when dealing with business in Russia. It has been super interesting to see also how the business culture is evolving and the process may be similar to other cultures as Latin American ones.”

“I appreciate the pride that Russia has for its country as well as the historical context that led Russia to preferring a single-head government as opposed to the method of government that America practices. I feel that I could converse with a Russian business without offering offense and even build relationships. My future job is a leadership rotation program and thanks to this Russia trip, I am now considering bidding for a 6-month rotation in Russia.”

“Through this trip, I realized just how little I knew about Russia and learned so much. I feel like I am so much better prepared to work with people/companies from Russia after this experience. Given that I want to work in a global context, it has also caused me to think about how I might be able to develop similar knowledge for other countries that I might work with.”

“I have a better perspective on how to do business in Russia. This trip provided context around the culture and the reason why business is done in such a way. The program also helped me become familiar with the cities in which most business is done. I can see myself taking the metro in Moscow or attending cultural events in St. Petersburg. I also now understand (and am more empathetic) towards native Russians. I have a better sense of their preferred working styles and environment and this is helpful to work with/collaborate with, manage, and influence in future situations.”