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Overview of Study Abroad Program

The EngT 231 course focuses on three topics: leadership, ethics, and globalization. While in China you will experience these topics firsthand while studying about them.

Globalization is changing engineering and technology across the world. As a result, companies that design and manufacture products are more likely than ever before to be spread across multiple locations in the future. A major driver of this corporate “geo-spread” is the availability of inexpensive communications technology that will allow significant interaction between technical teams across long distances. Individuals with the inclination and preparation to pursue global opportunities will receive a broader and broader range of career options in the future, even as “off-shoring” threatens to diminish the number of technical positions in the U.S.

In addition to learning about leadership, ethics, and globalization, the program aims to increase students’ understanding of:

  1. How culture shapes the way people think, live, and work,
  2. How culture affects governments and economies, and
  3. How culture affects engineering and technology.

This will prepare students to take advantage of the new opportunities globalization provides and will prepare them to enter leadership roles in a variety of careers.

The program will take place approximately 4 May – 15 June. You will return home in time for summer term.

The following trips are planned during the study abroad:

  • Guilin
  • Hong Kong
  • ZhangJiaJie
  • An extended culture trip to Dunhuang, Xi'An, and Beijing.

Program Details

  • This program is designed principally for students from the College of Engineering and Technology but all BYU students are welcome.
  • SunYatSen University in Guangzhou, China, will host students in this intensive program during the spring term.
  • Courses will be held on campus during May followed by a two-week culture trip to northern China.
  • Students should plan to fly in to Guangzhou, arriving in time for the start of the program on May 4. They will then fly home from Beijing on June 15.

Course Requirements

All students attending the study abroad will take 6 course credits. One course is on global leadership and one is on Chinese culture and language.

EngT 231: Global Leadership - 3 Credits

  • The course will have its coursework supplemented by regular visits to design and manufacturing sites in and around Guangzhou. This will provide opportunities for extensive interaction with both native Chinese technical personnel and foreigners working in China, and will help students learn about leadership and globalization firsthand and about the operation of engineering teams across countries and cultures.

Chinese Language and Culture - 3 Credits

All students will register “Intro to Chinese Culture and Language”. It will introduce students to Chinese culture, society, and the Chinese worldview. It will also provide an introduction to spoken Mandarin.

Where do students live?

  • Students will live in two-person hotel rooms on campus and near the classrooms and cafeteria.

Preparation for Study Abroad

  • All accepted students are expected to register through ISP for a one-credit, pre-departure preparation class held Wednesdays from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m. during the second block of winter semester.
  • Part-time BYU students and non-BYU students are eligible to attend. Contact the program director for details.

What funding sources are available?

  • Regular BYU tuition scholarships, Pell Grants, and Federal Insured Students Loans may be applied to Study Abroad programs.
  • Students majoring in Electrical Engineering or Computer Engineering will receive an additional $400 subsidy to help reduce the cost of their attendance in the program.
  • Students who submit the financial aid section of the ISP application, and who have a current FAFSA form on file at the Financial Aid Office (A-41 ASB), will be considered for a Study Abroad scholarship.

Application Process

  • Complete the ISP online application at
  • Application deadline is every December for the following spring term.
  • Contact the director for an initial interview once your application is complete.
  • ISP reserves the right to cancel this program, revise its offering, or make any adjustments to the preliminary cost estimates due to conditions beyond its control.

How much does this cost?

  • For students from the College of Engineering and Technology, the cost consists of: $1,850 for the program itself + spring term tuition + airfare. Tuition is $1,250 for Spring 2015. Airfare has typically been in the $1,100-1,300 range. For students from other colleges on campus, the cost is $1,500 higher (the college provides a subsidy to their own students for this program).
  • If you have a spring scholarship, it can be applied to the study abroad.
  • As mentioned above, students majoring in Electrical Engineering or Computer Engineering will receive an additional $400 subsidy to help reduce the cost of their attendance in the program.
  • Does not include personal expenses and some meals.

Interested students should contact:

Brent Nelson, professor of electrical and computer engineering at BYU, initially created and was the first director of this program in 2007. He returned again as director in 2010, 2011, and in 2013. Nelson has been a member of the BYU faculty since 1984 and served as department chair from 1993 to 1997. He has traveled extensively throughout China over the past thirty years and is fluent in Mandarin Chinese. During spring terms of 2008 and 2014, Nelson accompanied the BYU Ballroom Dance Company to China as their cultural advisor. He is excited to be returning to China again this year as director of this program.

Brent Nelson
459 CB
(801) 422-6455

101 HRCB
(801) 422-3686

overview.txt · Last modified: 2014/08/12 16:26 by nelson
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