Food and Birthday Photos — May 29, 2015

Food and Birthday Photos

                                  

Advertisements
Germany Food (part 1) — May 24, 2015
Technology or a Lack Thereof — May 23, 2015

Technology or a Lack Thereof

Today (May 20) the Missouri Western State University Global Viewpoints class went to a brilliant technology company that serves as a software provider for many companies you frequent daily. The buildings on their campus are beautiful and amazingly functional, to provide a town like atmosphere for their approximately 10,000 employees on this campus. Every employee I met there was extremely nice and helpful. However, when you get to a technology company you would expect perfection in their software, or at least claimed perfection.

When we arrived the company had a replica assembly line, to demonstrate how their software benefits assembly lines. What was ironic was that their wifi was not configuring with the demonstration assembly line. Further, in the mock-up assembly line there was a camera that has the sole purpose of watching out for computer-made errors in the production process. A technology company with errors is something that we are all used to, a technology company that plans for errors in their processes: surprising. That is until I realized their wisdom, the company realizes that their will be errors and proactively takes steps to fix those.

A popular way of getting through life is acting like there are no problems. We constantly say that we are doing good or well when asked “how are you?” because nothing else deserves being mentioned. What this company is great at is realizing even a nearly perfect machine in an ideal setting will face problems, they realize that and have a plan for solutions. It is important in our lives to realize we have needs that we cannot meet on our own. I recommend you take a few moments to see if you have any people in your life who are there watching out for you, who will point you in the proper way in your time of need after things have went wrong. Planning for difficulties, especially major ones, is something difficult; however, it is a true sign of wisdom and strength. If you do, say thanks to them the next time you see them. If not, ask someone you know for a little assistance, because you realize they have wisdom and help that you will need in your life sooner than you might like to admit.

Your friend,
James

(P.S. the wifi at our hotels, and in the cities as a whole, has been hit and miss so I will post more pictures asap)

Middelburg, Netherlands Photos — May 17, 2015
Justice and Working in the Gray — May 15, 2015

Justice and Working in the Gray

Since my last update we have spent a few days in Amsterdam, went to Rotterdam and toured their port, went to three companies (Gasson Diamond Factory, Euro Dev, and Cargill), and visited Den Haag (the Hague). I plan on posting some pictures today or tomorrow and I have a lot more on my camera that I will upload when I get stateside. However, before all that I would like to talk about something I learned: how all industries have their own ethical dilemmas and how those issues necessitate working towards justice for all.

We went to Cargill, an animal feed manufacturer, as part of Missouri Western’s Craig School of Business Global Viewpoints course. Cargill discussed the need to balance and mitigate several ethical dilemmas on providing food to a growing population (if genetically modified food is safe, if you can tell people they can only have a certain number of children, and if you can put a limit on the amount of animal protein consumed). This problem involves those without a voice because an easy solution would be to decrease the availability of cheap animal protein to developing countries decreasing the population growth rate and/or decreasing the amount of animal protein consumed. Credit to Cargill, they seem to exhibit active social responsibility through encouraging proper farming techniques and building schools in developing countries.

Cargill attempts to balance a profit with profiting the world as a whole, we have the same responsibility in our personal and work lives. It is easy to not give back in meaningful ways because there will be a noticeable cost. Those in developing countries deserve more than our money or fleeting thoughts after we see an advertisement from UNICEF. We must use the intellectual talents and resources we have been blessed with to advocate for those who are in need. There is a need to consider how our options affect everyone, not just a few stakeholders who speak the loudest. We have all been in positions in our life where we needed the help of others, so our actions should not hurt those who are currently in a time of great need.

I am writing this just after touring the Peace Palace in the Netherlands, it reminds me that when we do not properly value a segment of the population in our world the repercussions are severe and has the propensity to result in racism and genocide. May that not be able to be said of you and me.

Your friend,
James

Amsterdam (May 11) — May 11, 2015
Graduation, Flight, and Mother’s Day —

Graduation, Flight, and Mother’s Day

Yesterday (May 9) was graduation for Missouri Western State University, it was great to share the experience with several friends and family members. The day started out emotionally as I drove past a couple of schools I had previously attended. However, joy soon arrived as I met my friends at the basketball gym to celebrate us finally finishing the 4 (or more) year degree, known to the world as a bachelor’s degree. I received my degree as a B.S. in Business Administration with a major in Accounting. I have come to gain the appreciation more and more in recent years that accomplishments are accomplishments not based on what you have done, but how you have grown with a group, now called friends. Friends, family, former coworkers, and professors are such a blessing and I realize that they have been vitally important in allowing me to be where I am today.

Today (May 10) is the day for heading to Amsterdam with my Global Viewpoints class, from Missouri Western State University. Several of us are running on fumes from the busy times surrounding finals, graduation, and preparing for this trip. It has created several lovely quotes already and this trip is sure to be an interesting experience with all these great students. I helped check part of our group in and the machine broke, starting things off well! I look forward to keeping you all notified about how the trip progresses and I will post a few pictures during the trip. (There will be several more after I get because I plan to primarily take photos with a camera and I have no way of uploading them until I get back)

Today also serves as Mother’s Day. I would like to thank my mom for all the help she has been throughout the years. There have been several late nights of packing, preparing for school projects, and talking about life. I am grateful for her everyday and would like to thank her for always being there when I need her.

Your friend (from a flight from Kansas City, MO to Newark, NJ),
James

P.S. This was submitted at Amsterdam’s airport.

The Netherlands and Germany — May 6, 2015

The Netherlands and Germany

This Sunday, May 10, I will be leaving for an international trip with my university’s business school. Throughout the trip I will keep you up to date through this blog. Feel free to post any questions you have to the comments section and I will gladly answer them as soon as I have internet access. Have a great day!

Your friend,

James