Childhood of traveling inspires student’s international business education

Senior Jannatul Naima volunteered with The Muslimah Project and the United Muslim Relief Organization at Temple.

Jannatul Naima, a senior international business major, will start a rotational program at JPMorgan Chase after graduation. | VEENA PRAKRIYA / THE TEMPLE NEWS

After studying abroad in high school in her native Bangladesh and visiting her extended family there, Jannatul Naima wanted a college major that would enable her to learn about different cultures around the world.

“I feel like every culture has something to teach you,” said Naima, a senior international business major. “There’s always something you can learn from different people. You get to work with a lot of international clients as well, and then you also get to understand the markets in different countries.”

A first-generation college student, Naima was raised in Philadelphia and attended West Philadelphia High School.

“You don’t really have access to those resources that someone whose maybe parents or siblings went to college before you, so it’s a very different experience,” Naima said. “From applying to college to now finally graduating, I think it’s amazing.”

Following graduation, Naima will enter a rotational program for a corporate analyst development program at JPMorgan Chase, a multi-national investment and financial services firm. She interned with the firm in Wilmington, Delaware, last summer in the project management department. The program she is entering will teach Naima about risks and controls, data analytics and process management.

“Because there [are] three rotations, I’d be able to work in three different areas and kind of get a feel for what the different areas entail for me,” Naima said. “They give you leadership roles within those rotations where you take initiative and then take ownership for different tasks, and that’s really great because it really builds you up for that management position.”

During Naima’s time at Temple, she’s worked on the executive board of two student groups, The Muslimah Project — an organization that advocates for empowerment of Muslim women, while raising awareness about stereotypes they face — and the United Muslim Relief Organization, which provides aid and relief to alleviate global humanitarian issues.

In January, Naima also participated in a 10-day business immersion program in Vietnam with the Fox School of Business. During her trip, she visited multiple companies and got to experience Vietnamese culture.

The Muslimah Project is no longer active, but the UMR, which is a chapter of the national nonprofit humanitarian organization, works to provide students with opportunities to serve the community.

This year, UMR made cards for Eid, an Islamic holiday, and gave them to the Nationalities Service Center, a refugee center in Philadelphia that then distributed them to Muslim refugees.

“I joined the two orgs because both orgs allowed me to help others, but in different ways,” Naima said. “The Muslimah Project allowed me to empower other women through discussions and workshops, while United Muslim Relief allowed me to provide assistance to those less fortunate in the community and around the world through various awareness events and drives.”

In her four years at Temple, Naima said she’s glad to have dedicated time to charity work in Philadelphia. She thinks it’s important for every student to give back to their community.

“As Temple students, we are a part of this community, so we have the responsibility to give back to the community that were taking from,” Naima said.  “The people serving or working in the stores are providing services to us, you know they are giving to us, and they’re helping us have this experience in college. So I think in that sense, we have the same responsibility.”

Bertrand Guillotin, a strategic management professor who taught Naima in two capstone courses, said he thinks Naima’s humility and work ethic will set her apart from others in her future career.

“She will lead by example,” Guillotin said. “Being humble, hardworking, open-minded, all those attributes when you put them together, I think she will be a standout employee at JPMorgan.”

Naima found that the Center for Student Professional Development in Fox assisted her while she was searching for internships and building her resume.

She also worked in the dean’s office in Fox since her freshman year. This helped her develop career-related skills like writing professional emails and using Excel.

Guillotin and Anthony Seeton, another strategic management professor,  influenced Naima during her time at Temple, she said. Seeton taught Naima in the Fundamentals of International Business class, which helped her gain more understanding of the international business major. Guillotin taught Naima’s Global Entrepreneurship and International Business capstones.

For the International Business capstone, students worked for 10 weeks with a local company to address its current challenges. Students may help with attempts to enter new markets or improve the company’s presence in the current market.

Naima worked with a skin care product company called Lindi Skin. The company wanted to expand internationally, so she worked as their consultant, helping them decide where to expand and with whom to partner, as well as the company’s budget.

“It’s really intense, it’s really challenging, but again, Jannatul stood out by being ready, being positive, working well with her classmates, and she had great results,” Guillotin said. “The client was very happy.”

Guillotin found Naima’s positivity and preparedness for class helped her stand out.

“Naima always has what I call some intellectual curiosity, that leads to great questions,” Guillotin said. “She has done a lot of group work in those two classes, and she has also shown some entrepreneurial spirit.”

Naima is looking forward to applying her international education experience and the knowledge she gained at Fox to the rotational program at JPMorgan Chase. She also hopes to continue to learn about different countries through their economies and cultures.

“I feel like every culture has something to teach you,” Naima said. “I think international business gave me that good balance between understanding a country through its economy and also its culture.”

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