Studying in South Africa Inspires Rutgers–Camden Business Major

Antony Muthangya helps South African students in 2015.

Antony Muthangya helps South African students in 2015.

For Antony Muthangya, the Rutgers School of Business–Camden commencement address by a visionary South African business leader will be more than inspirational.  It will be familiar.

Thanks to an annual Rutgers University–Camden study abroad trip over spring break to South Africa, students like Muthangya – who toured the region in 2015 – have had the opportunity to visit businesses and government institutions to learn about management and marketing practices firsthand.

While in South Africa, Muthangya visited Pick n Pay, an international retail establishment, and met Suzanne Ackerman-Berman, the company’s transformation director, who will be the keynote speaker for the Rutgers–Camden business school’s commencement on Thursday, May 19.

Ackerman-Berman founded the Pick n Pay Small Business Incubator in 2007.  The incubator seeks to address the social and economic inequalities of the past created by the apartheid era by providing access to the formal market for small and previously disadvantaged entrepreneurs.

“Seeing how business is done outside of the United States was eye-opening,” says Muthangya, a management and marketing major.  Especially inspiring was the opportunity to learn about Pick n Pay’s model of assisting new entrepreneurs with education and mentoring to ensure their sustainability as suppliers to the broader economy, he explains.

The Rutgers–Camden South Africa study program, now in its 21st year, is open to MBA and undergraduate business students.

Muthangya, a Mount Holly resident who was born in Kenya, values every aspect of his undergraduate experience at Rutgers.  “The students and professors are wonderful.  The campus is so diverse.  Everything started falling into place for me when I came here.”

While he arrived planning to major in science, Muthangya found his way to the Rutgers School of Business–Camden by following a longtime interest.  A class with Carol Kaufman-Scarborough, a professor of marketing, inspired him to join the Business Leader Development Program, which gives undergraduates opportunities for leadership training, networking experience, and mentoring by faculty and business leaders from a wide variety of industries.

“Being around other student leaders pushed me to excel,” he says.   “This class helped to build me as a student leader.”

With a job offer from a major financial firm, Muthangya will soon be applying his training and education to real-life business issues.

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