Leah Ranta

5/8/2014

Leah Ranta is graduating in the spring of 2015. She is a global business leadership major from Stillwater, Minn.

What inspired you to become a global business leadership major?

I have always had a passion for traveling and working with vulnerable populations. Initially, I was on track to pursue a nursing major, aspiring to do medical work in developing countries. After speaking with Professor Moskowitz during my sophomore year, I realized that many GBUS majors go into managerial work in non-profits and other related fields. Because of the flexibility the major has to offer, I knew that a major in global business leadership was the right fit for me.

What advice do you have for students considering a major in global business leadership?

Get involved in extracurricular activities!  The majority of my learning has actually been outside of the classroom in clubs such as Enactus and Bonner. Enactus has given me numerous opportunities to help build my professional skills outside of campus. I also urge other students to study abroad! Take advantage of all the opportunities our school has to offer. There is no better way to truly understand what it will be like to interact with another culture until you actually do it. I recommend students to study somewhere outside their comfort zone. When you bring what you have learned back to the classroom, it will enhance not only your own learning experience but your classmates as well.

How do you anticipate using your degree after graduation?

After graduation, I hope to get more field experience abroad before going back to graduate school for international development. Ideally, I would like to work within the state department, USAID or potentially the United Nations.

What has been the highlight of your time at CSB and SJU?

Hands down, my study abroad experience has been the highlight of my time at CSB and SJU. I spent five months in India traveling, staying with a host family, working with victims of sexual exploitation and learning from everyday encounters. It was an adventure that will help me immensely in any future social or business interaction with people from cultures different than my own.

What has been the biggest challenge that you have had to overcome?

The biggest challenge has been time management during my junior year. It is the year that you may not only be juggling leadership roles in organizations (or for many studying abroad), but also trying to apply to jobs and internships.  Take the time to organize your four-year plan and what you want to gain from it all - the earlier you know what you want, the easier it will be to achieve that goal.

Are you involved in any other activities or clubs at CSB and SJU?

I have been employed at Southside Boys and Girls Club, a resident assistant and I will be the student director for the Institute of Women's Leadership. I have participated in ABE trips to Kansas City and Holden Village. I am a study abroad ambassador, mentor for exchange students at CSB and SJU, project leader for Enactus and a member of the Bonner Leadership Program.