Porto Sustainable Business Summer School: Sustainability from a Business Perspective

This July, the Porto Sustainable Business Summer School took place for the first time. During the three-week International Short Program, students from WU and Católica Porto Business School (CPBS) explored ideas and concepts of sustainable business. The focus was on strategic and operational decisions that companies make, the importance of ESG criteria and current EU directives. The relationship between financial instruments and sustainability was also addressed, and practices such as greenwashing were critically examined. WU bachelor students Aynur Temel and Stefan Filaus participated and shared their impressions from Porto with us.

WU Blog: How did you find out about Porto Summer School and why did you decide to participate?

Aynur Temel: You can find all kinds of information if you browse a bit on WU’s website. Since a semester abroad was out of question for me in terms of duration, I looked for alternatives and was very happy to find the ISP Porto. The topic of “sustainable business” also corresponds to my area of interest, in which I would like to be involved professionally in the future. My motivation to participate in this program was extremely high.

Stefan Filaus: I first read about the Porto Summer School on WU’s homepage when I was looking for ways to make the most out of my studies. I applied because I am passionate about sustainability and thought it would be a good chance to gain international experience in a short time and with little planning involved.

I applied because I am passionate about sustainability and thought it would be a good chance to gain international experience in a short time and with little planning involved.

WU Blog: How did participating in the Porto Summer School benefit your personal development?

Aynur Temel: Of course, you learn a lot about the subject, but what I learned the most were intercultural and interpersonal skills. How two countries have completely different cultures and ways of life – that fascinated me every day. Working with the Portuguese participants was also interesting because of that – the pace, the intensity, the interaction in the group. I can definitely say that these 3 weeks have broadened my horizons considerably.

Stefan Filaus: The Porto Summer School was a success and a great time for me. I had the opportunity to acquire and apply knowledge from the field of sustainability. In addition, I came into closer contact with students from WU and Católica Porto Business School. The acquired knowledge in the field of sustainability will help me in the business world and for my later professional career.

WU Blog: What can you say about the academic program and the lecturers? What impression did you get?

Stefan Filaus: Through lecturers from different fields of sustainability and through a variety of different activities (group work, presentations and discussions), we were able to immerse ourselves in the topic and gain different perspectives. In addition, by working on a real case study, we had to combine the concepts we learned and apply them in practice. This made the academic experience all the more profound.

WU Blog: How did you like the social and cultural program? Did the participants have enough opportunities to make new contacts?

Aynur Temel: My personal highlight was the Cultural Evening – the  exchange and the interest in absorbing as much as possible from the other culture really fostered the group dynamic.

Stefan Filaus: Definitely! Through the Cultural Evening, the company visit to a regional employer, and through an organized surfing course, I was able to connect with other WU and Portuguese students. These connections were then deepened through meet-ups in my free time and on the weekends; where there was also time to party 😉

Stefan Filaus enjoyed his stay in Porto with new friends.

WU Blog: Any final remarks about the program?

Stefan Filaus: I can really say that participating in the Porto Sustainable Business Summer School was one of the best decisions during my studies at WU. I gained international experience in an exciting country and in a beautiful city. During these weeks, I met new people and had a lot of fun.

WU Blog: How did the coordination with the partner university, students, and teachers work?

Christina Kampe (WU Vienna, Program Coordinator): The cooperation with all parties involved worked extremely well. The teachers were committed and eager to provide the students with a valuable learning experience. Thanks to the colleagues at CPBS, the students were able to take away new teaching content and got to know Porto and the Portuguese culture. This was made possible through a varied social program.

Good to know:

 International Short Programs (ISPs) abroad: Gain intercultural and international experience in a short period of time.

  • Offers and application periods: Our short programs have something for every area of interest. Look forward to attractive destinations and exciting academic topics. Application periods can be found on our website.
  • NEW program: In the winter semester, you can apply for an International Short Program in Argentina for the first time. The program will take place in February 2023 and you can probably apply between October and November. Just check our website at the beginning of the semester for more details.

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