International business students complete courses at Mount

February 05, 2016


Upon completing a three-week program in United States business practices, the students of International Business School – São Paulo enjoyed a graduation ceremony on January 28, 2016. The Mount’s Office of International Programs and School of Business, who helped coordinate the program, presented certificates to 55 graduates representing 16 countries.

More than 50 students from across the globe completed a three-week business course at Mount Saint Mary College on Thursday, January 28.

The ceremony was streamed online, allowing friends and family of the international scholars to view the event live.

“Your challenge, and my challenge to you, is to focus on what is right,” said Judy Kennedy, City of Newburgh mayor, to the graduates. “Focus on how you can make a change and put your stamp on the world.”

Through the International Business School – São Paulo and the Mount’s Office of International Programs, the Mount’s School of Business hosted the scholars, who learned standard business practices in the U.S. In addition to regular classes, the students enjoyed panel discussions lead by local entrepreneurs and visited leading area businesses, including Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon, N.Y. and the Newburgh Brewing Company.


Judy Kennedy, City of Newburgh mayor; Tracey Niemotko, Mount accounting professor and School of Business chair; Ashley Knox, study abroad coordinator at the Mount; Moira Tolan, Mount business professor and graduate program coordinator; and Aldo Brunhara, institutional relations director for International Business School.

Hailing from 16 different countries, including Brazil, Costa Rica, the Netherlands, England, Poland, Spain, and Australia, the scholars began taking classes at the Mount on January 11, 2016.

According to Ashley Knox, study abroad coordinator at the Mount, the courses helped prepare the students to be employed in the global market “through intensive English language courses and providing them with a deep understanding of sustainable business, also known as green business.”

Aldo Brunhara of Brazil, institutional relations director for International Business School, was proud of the scholars’ accomplishments.

“They are outstanding students,” he said. “They learned lots about how to do business in America, globalization, project management, finance, and strategic thinking.”


Vanessa Lehmann of Brazil and Jacob Gadziala of England on their last day of classes at Mount Saint Mary College.

Vanessa Lehmann of Brazil discovered the program through her college, Universidade do Vale do Rio dos Sinos, and joined so she could improve her English and business knowledge. She says the course also enhanced her critical thinking skills.

“Everything was helpful,” she said. “How to think outside of the box – I think that’s the main lesson.”

Lehmann also got a lesson in meteorology when the Hudson Valley received its first winter storm of the season.

“I never saw snow falling,” she explained. “I went outside and felt like a child on a playground.”

For Jacob Gadziala of University of Westminster in London, a Polish man living in the United Kingdom, the program offered his first exposure to the United States.

“I love courses like this,” he explained. “It was a great experience meeting new people and integrating with this culture. This opportunity has given us a massive head start.”