Wisconsin-Madison Students visit A-Star Alliance, Botswana
A-Star Alliance welcomed the students of The University of Wisconsin-Madison for a site-visit to their Aurostar & Arjav Diamonds Factories in Gaborone, Botswana on the 6th June 2019.
The University of Wisconsin-Madison is the Flagship University for the 26-campus University of Wisconsin (UW) system. One of the leading academic programs is that of MBA and the highlight of the program is the Global Learning Experience (GLE). The GLE is intended to give the students the opportunity to apply their learning from their first two years of intensive graduate-level business classes and help them better understand global business opportunities and challenges.
On their site visit to Aurostar & Arjav Diamonds factories, the forty-four students were provided insight into the companies mission and vision and its opportunities and challenges, by Mr. Bart Heylen (Acting Factory Manager) and his colleagues. They also provided them a thorough understanding of the nature of their business and the processes that are followed in cutting and polishing of rough diamonds. Discussion of the companies’ operations brought to life the research that students had done prior to their GLE trip and helped them better understand the diamond industry in Botswana. They also learned many ways in which a multi-national company can succeed in what many consider to be a challenging business environment. The visit was a wonderful learning opportunity that was made possible by the mutual association of Aurostar Diamonds and the University of Wisconsin with Mike Brook (Debswana Diamond Company Ltd.) who has been a generous supporter of global learning and a wonderful promoter of the diamond industry in Botswana.
Prior to visiting South Africa and Botswana, students had read over 200 articles about the countries and the region, participated in a class with Professor Randall Dunham that explored global business in developing economies with a focus on Sub-Saharan Africa, and conducted research in teams to learn about a wide range of issues in Botswana and South Africa including culture, administrative factors, geography, economics, risk factors and risk mitigation, and political and governmental factors. Visits to companies such as Blue Star provided the opportunity to experience firsthand the complex business and the regional issues, which the students had studied during the last two years.
Part of A-Star Alliance’s commitment is to inspire the next generation of engineers, entrepreneurs and creative talent. We actively encourage the use of our facilities by schools, universities and local groups including regular tours of the manufacturing facilities. We believe that these visits are aimed at sparking an interest in technology and manufacturing, and to help develop the technological understanding of the innovators of the future.
A-Star Alliance wishes all the students and facilitators of The University of Wisconsin-Madison all the success for their future endeavors.