Taylor Davis (BCom’17) – Arc Initiative 2014
Travelling and living in Ethiopia as a first year business student was one of the most impactful and important experiences of my life. It was incredible to be able to directly apply what I had learned in school and teach it to a group of passionate and intelligent individuals at the workshop. Moreover, having the opportunity to do internships alongside a team of brilliant Sauder students led to numerous lessons about critical thinking and teamwork. My experience teaching and collaborating made me realize my desire to be a Teaching Assistant in my future years in Sauder, and illuminated my interest in event organization.
I was particularly inspired by the ambition of all the entrepreneurs I worked with. Despite setbacks or a lack of opportunity, they were driven to live out their business dreams, and build a better community while strengthening their economy. Their spirit acted as a reminder for me to take advantage of all the amazing opportunities that Sauder has to offer. It has been a driving motivation for me to reflect on what my true passions are and how I can combine them with my business education. Living in Ethiopia for two months provided insight into the vast differences on how business is conducted internationally, and was also a great cultural learning experience. Some highlights include: our visit the African Union, attending a traditional Ethiopian wedding, volunteering at an elementary school, and attending a soccer match. I feel so privileged to have worked with a recent Sauder graduate, Dominik Bundschuch, on our internship projects. He acted as a mentor to me and taught me crucial invaluable business and personal skills; I think the connection built between students, alumni, and the entrepreneurs through the Arc Initiative is one of the many unique and powerful aspects of the program.
Now that I am back at Sauder, my incredible experience with the Arc Initiative has led me to continue my involvement with the program. We are currently building out our home team and planning towards our future goals so that more students have the phenomenal opportunity to go on trips similar to mine. I have returned from my experience with the Arc Initiative with memories, experiences, and skills that I will hold with me for the rest of my life.