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International Business Center reaching new heights as $1.2M grant renewed by U.S. Department of Education

Monday, August 8, 2022

To increase and promote the nation’s capacity for international understanding and competitiveness, the Broad College of Business’s International Business Center is stepping things up a notch.

Recently renewed as a Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER) with more than $1.2 million in grant funding from the U.S. Department of Education, IBC is launching several activities and projects at the undergraduate and graduate levels aimed at enhancing the development of a global mindset for Broad Spartans at MSU.

Ahmet H. Kirca headshot

Ahmet Kirca, director of IBC and associate professor of international business and marketing

“For this granting cycle, we made special attention to offer a more innovative program because we knew that the competition would be fierce,” Ahmet Kirca, director of IBC and associate professor of international business and marketing, said. “Our strategic work agenda comprises 34 projects and 98 activities.”

New student initiatives that will be carried on through 2026 include the International Business Case Competition — held for the first time in November 2021 — and peer-to-peer language training programs, the Academy of International Business-CIBER Consortium for Doctoral Education, the Global Speaker Program and the implementation of a global mindset digital badge, helping students showcase programs and activities they have completed in this area.

IBC will also provide substantial support to academic research on international competitiveness through research and teaching workshops, initiatives like Evidence-Based International Business, Brand Protection, Product Counterfeiting and Global Supply Chain Security.

Additionally, several faculty development opportunities in international business programs targeting faculty at the Broad College, minority-serving institutions and community colleges are also in the works.

“For this granting cycle, we made special attention to offer a more innovative program because we knew that the competition would be fierce."

Long recognized as the country’s leader in training of community college faculty to teach international business, IBC and its globalEDGE.msu.edu online resource have been top-ranked on Google for years for “international business resources.” In 2021, globalEDGE had 1.6 million visitors and 5 million page views from more than 230 geographic locations globally. To ensure that globalEDGE remains as the world-leading website for international business resources, Kirca said it will undergo a major overhaul with new content and updates to improve functionality, ease of use and website navigation issues.

To increase and promote the nation’s capacity for international understanding and competitiveness, the U.S. Congress created CIBERs under the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988. Those are administered by the U.S. Department of Education – and the Broad College’s IBC is among a select group to have this distinction.

“MSU is the only university in Michigan – and one of only 16 universities in the country – given this privilege,” Kirca said. “Global mindset development, engagement and discovery for international competitiveness was the theme of our grant application and is fitting with our mission to leverage our leading-edge knowledge and skills to provide superior education, research and assistance to businesses, multiplier groups, faculty and students on issues of national significance for international competitiveness.”

Throughout its existence, IBC has provided facilitation to more than 15,000 U.S. companies going international (including more than 2,000 Michigan companies); trained more than 1,200 faculty at community colleges across 45 U.S. states (including faculty at 24 of 28 of Michigan’s community colleges); and consistently appeared at the top of research rankings in international business (Journal of International Business Studies).

More information about the International Business Center, its team, and activities can be found at ibc.msu.edu, or by contacting Ahmet Kirca.

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