Business Students Gain Valuable Experience in Mexico City

After successful trips the last two years to Los Angeles and San Francisco, the Girls' Business and Entrepreneurship Program spent several busy and rewarding days in Mexico City last week, meeting with several businesses and business leaders. The purpose of these trips is to provide students the ability to do site visits and learn from professionals at different levels in their career and in different types of organizations.

On the agenda in Mexico were meetings with the Public Opinion Editor of the independent paper La Reforma; the founder/owner and several team members of PAM, a local asset management firm; and a local entrepreneur and a venture capitalist, herself focused on women investors. Additionally, we met with a panel of women at Citibanamex, including the director of corporate governance and sustainability, the CFO for Mexico, and the finance manager for Latin America; the Managing Director for 3M Mexico; and finally a former vice minister for trade and current trade consultant at SAI

Through this experience, the Girls' Business & Entrepreneurship students learned about cultural differences between the U.S. and Mexico and the status of the Mexican economy, and heard the inspirational stories of these folks - and of so many amazing women. Key outcomes include building context for material studied in class and providing further frameworks within which the students can begin to plan and assess their future plans.

- Sandra Forero Bush, Girls' Business & Entrepreneurship Director



My mom grew up in Mexico City. Her stories, mixed perhaps with more than a little magic, left me in awe. Growing up in Tacoma in the 1980s, I could never really grasp her expatriate, 1950s Mexican childhood. But after last week, I have a slightly better understanding of that city and her life.
 
The Girls Business & Entrepreneurship program spent a week in Mexico City meeting with business leaders from a variety of sectors. I was fortunate to serve as a chaperone. This trip was the most formative trip I’ve attended in my 18 years at Annie Wright. I say this for two reasons.

First, the people with whom we met could not have been more impressive. From the top pollster in Mexico to a woman running her own asset management firm, from a young man starting a juice company to a macro-economic strategist, from the top management of 3M Mexico to a lawyer who helped draft NAFTA, the trip consistently put our students in front of remarkable people who were as humble as they were experienced.
 
Second, I witnessed firsthand how experience builds context and how context brings academic learning to life. I’m a firm believer that empowerment develops from the intentional combination of knowledge, skills, and experience. And wow, was our group empowered. They dazzled all of our hosts with sophisticated, nuanced, informed questions. They carried themselves with confidence and worked to understand the substance of each meeting. I watched our students grow and realized how the cumulative, layering effect of these trips is preparatory for their academic and professional futures.
 
In the Upper School for Girls, we have invested greatly in student travel experiences, purposefully tying this travel to student interest. If the time spent in Mexico City with the Business students is any indication, this money is extremely well spent.
 
Huge kudos to Ms. Bush for planning the trip, to Annie for leading the (s)Elective travel program, and to the students for leaning-into these rich, daring, and daunting experiences.

-Jake Guadnola, Director of Upper School for Girls
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Annie Wright Schools
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827 North Tacoma Avenue
Tacoma, WA 98403
253.272.2216

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253.272.2216

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Founded in Tacoma, Washington, in 1884, Annie Wright Schools serve students from age three through high school. Annie Wright Lower  and Middle Schools offer co-ed programs in Preschool through Grade 8, while separate Upper Schools for girls  and boys offer day and boarding options in Grades 9 through 12. Annie Wright is proud to be an International Baccalaureate World School.