It was time for Jon Hanson to step it up. His dream was to start a successful venture. Mr. Hanson, an engineer, now 38, had already taken a few online courses, but it was the intensive weeklong M.I.T. Innovation and Entrepreneurship Bootcamp held in Brisbane, Australia, a world away from his home in Brunswick, Me., that made his quest a reality.
“I told myself, ‘If I don’t do it now, it’s not going to happen,’” Mr. Hanson said. “It was exciting. I love traveling and going to new countries, and I had never been to Australia before, but the intensity of the course is something that surprised me. They don’t call it a boot camp for no reason. I think the most sleep I got any night that week was four hours.”
Boot camps, like the one Mr. Hanson attended, are just one example of the growing number of short, intensive programs now offered online, or on campuses around the world, that can help workers at all stages of their careers become more globally minded and find global job opportunities.
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Mr. Hanson and the other 117 participants at the Brisbane boot camp listened to interactive lectures from successful entrepreneurs, founders of socially conscious nonprofits and venture capitalists, and each was part of a team that was assigned to design a business to solve a problem.
Ultimately, Mr. Hanson connected with a boot camp student from Brazil and one from Guatemala, and they formed QuickBrasil, which helps people whose flights have been canceled.
The service, currently only for Brazilians, helps passengers receive compensation from claims that the company files against any airline that serves the Brazilian market. “We came from different backgrounds and talents and coalesced around a common idea,” he said.
The rising number of concentrated programs intended to create a global mind-set is not unexpected given that workplaces are increasingly global, with teams spanning continents and cultures.
“People now compete globally, and it is intense,” said Erdin Beshimov, a founder and director of M.I.T. Bootcamps, which started five years ago. “The opportunities are much greater for those with a global mind-set.”
The motivation, whether someone is 30 or 70, is to develop a broader view of the world and to build a global network, said Vimala Palaniswamy, associate director of M.I.T. Bootcamps. “At the heart of it is communication, a deep dive into who you are as an individual and how you relate to others from different cultures.”
Dana Galin, 52, a leadership coach and founder of Imprint Leadership Partners in Atlanta, attended the three-day Transformation with Purpose Bootcamp earlier this year at I.E. University, which is based in Madrid. “I am always looking to develop and help my clients do the same,” she said.
The curriculum examined “global trends, history and cybersecurity and how you place yourself in the world, and pushed us to explore our values,” she said.
The teaching took place at I.E. University’s campus in Segovia, outside Madrid, in the 13th-century Convent of Santa Cruz la Real.
“It caused me to think bigger, to place myself in a bigger playground, and a bigger world,” she said. “The world needs you to play big and make an impact in your part of the world. It’s the ripple effect. The program made me wake up internally to what is driving my thinking and wake up to the world that I am a part of.”
It caused me to think bigger, to place myself in a bigger playground, and a bigger world,” she said. “The world needs you to play big and make an impact in your part of the world. It’s the ripple effect.
That’s not a bad return on a brief getaway, Ms. Galin said. And it’s just what she and many others are seeking. “These kinds of programs are becoming so in demand because careers are way longer and more uncertain and fluid, and the need for constant update and upgrade is growing,” said Teresa Martín-Retortillo, the executive president of I.E. Exponential Learning. “The opportunity to pause in that process for a short period of intense and immersive training has become more and more relevant.”
While these may not be technical skills like coding, there is intrinsic value in looking at things from a different perspective. “Our students work on their curiosity,” Ms. Martín-Retortillo said. “You have the luxury of sitting next to people from different nationalities. Whether you’re 28 or 58, sitting next to someone from a different culture is totally the spark.”
Following is a selection of short, globally focused programs that can help entrepreneurs, and those who are thinking about changing careers or are adding skills to their toolboxes.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The M.I.T. Bootcamps are typically three to seven days of intensive training and are held around the globe. Most of the boot camps have 60 to 120 students.
This year, M.I.T. will hold six open-admission boot camps. Three are overseas (Brisbane, Tokyo and Hoffenheim, Germany), and three are on the Cambridge, Mass., campus (Healthcare Innovation, Deep Tech and Venture Scaling). Typically, 30 to 40 countries are represented at each one. Tuition: $6,500 to $9,500, depending on the content and equipment required. M.I.T. offers limited scholarships. Administrators can also guide participants to potential sources of funding. Mr. Hanson, for example, received a grant from the Maine Technology Institute.
The M.I.T. Sloan School of Management also offers a Global Executive Academy, an eight-day management and leadership program in Cambridge. Tuition: $15,300 (excluding accommodations).
The Transformation With Purpose three-day boot camp in Madrid and Segovia is aimed at those over 40 who are seeking to explore what their next act will be. Tuition: €4,600, about $5,100. There’s also Transformation With Purpose Fellowship, a residential program on the Madrid campus for professionals who typically have more than two decades of work experience. The fellowship, which lasts nearly three months, is intended “to accelerate and enrich fellows’ transformation to a new chapter of personal and professional purpose and explore options for the next act.” Tuition for fellows is €45,000, about $50,000. Living expenses are not included.
I.E. also offers five-week High Impact Online Programs that are taught in English. The live virtual teaching sessions connect students with classmates around the world. One of the programs, Leadership and Strategy in the Age of Disruption, for example, focuses on the effect of rapid changes in global business and ways to respond. Tuition ranges from €1,950 to €2,050 per course.
University of California, San Francisco
The U.C.S.F. Global Health Bootcamp is intended to bolster the careers of physicians, pharmacists, nurses and other health care professionals. This three-day program (with an optional day focused on ultrasound training), is offered once a year, normally in January, at the university’s Parnassus Campus.
Students learn about hurdles to worldwide health delivery and can dive into specific areas through workshops on quality improvement, education, advocacy and mobile technology. One motivation for attendees is to build networks by interacting with faculty and speakers who are leaders in global health. Attendance is limited to 36 participants. Tuition is $1,200 to $1,550.
New York University
New York University’s Stern School of Business offers a roster of programs ranging from two to five days on its Greenwich Village campus under the canopy of Global Economy and Society Short Courses. These include the two-day Sustainability Training for Business Leaders, which is intended to develop knowledge, skills and perspective to understand and address worldwide environmental and social challenges. Tuition is $3,800.
“Every course we offer has a global component,” said Prof. Robert Salomon, vice dean of executive programs. He teaches a two-day course, Leading Global Organizations: Managing the Complex Challenges of Globalization, for entrepreneurs who are expanding abroad, executives at firms already doing business globally, and financial analysts or consultants whose clients are global organizations. The typical participant has an average of 15 years of work experience.
The six-day Executive Leadership Seminar is offered eight times a year in Aspen, Colo., or in the Washington, D.C., area. Each seminar has up to 23 participants from “across sectors and throughout the world to explore the values, habits and convictions that drive effective leadership,” according to the website. Topics addressed include “basic assumptions about human nature, identity and the rise of individualism, the competing polarities of efficiency and community, and navigating leadership values in tension.”
Participants are from the corporate, nonprofit, government and military sectors with different levels of leadership responsibility and a diversity of geography, cultural background, and age.
Tuition is $11,350. The fee includes all meals, lodging, seminar materials and activities. Scholarships of $5,675 are available for those who work for a nonprofit or government organization. Registration for the 2020 cycle of Executive Leadership seminars opens June 17.
By Kerry Hannon