Innovation Out of the Classroom: Lally MBA Students Travel to D.C.
Thirteen Lally School MBA students visited Washington, D.C., this spring to gain insight and understanding on the communication channels there that help to foster innovation, entrepreneurship, economic development, and international relations in the United States. The students meet with public and political officials and organizations to learn and discuss business concepts and strategies that could help the continued economic growth of Rensselaer County and the region’s Tech Valley.
The trip was part of the class MGMT 7070 - Managing on the Edge: Corporate Innovation for the Coming Years, which investigates the challenges of managing and leading organizations in situations characterized by their non-linear, unpredictable nature. Taught by Lally School Professor Tom Triscari, the MBA students are challenged to develop innovative responses and solutions for business, drawing upon the full array of knowledge, skills, and insights they have gained during their graduate program.
The Washington, D.C., residency program provided Lally MBA students with a powerful field experience. It also gave these students an understanding into how innovation and entrepreneurial pursuits can be fostered and are affected by U.S. policy formation and implementation processes. The trip provided a context for students to view and assess the relationships of academics, business, and government in economic growth, as well as the inherent opportunities and challenges.
To deepen their understanding, these MBA students also spent time during their trip speaking with political administrators and think tanks in D.C., such as the Brookings Institution, where they engaged in discussion about how innovation, increased coordination of resources, and creation of new businesses can foster economic development.
“Managing on the Edge has given me the chance to test the skills I have accumulated in a non-academic environment. By working within this context, I gained a better insight into the effects my actions and ideas had in different business and political settings,” said Virginia Lai, MBA ’14.