Sunshine and cultural immersion are what a University of Toledo faculty member has to look forward to as he takes off this week for Central America.
Dr. Ainsworth Bailey is set to leave for Heredia, Costa Rica, where he will teach Cross-Cultural Consumer Behavior and International Business and Management this fall as a visiting professor through the University Studies Abroad Consortium (USAC), a program offering study abroad opportunities for students and teaching abroad opportunities for faculty members.“Traditionally, Heredia, and Costa Rica in general, has not been a program site for business, and I am hoping that I will be able to start the process of Heredia being a site where USAC participants will be able to take business courses,” he said. “I want to learn more about Costa Rica and business in general and marketing and consumer behavior in particular that I can to enhance my teaching here at UT.”
The associate professor of marketing and international business visited Heredia before when he was a recipient of USAC’s Faculty International Development Award — a program run similarly to a student USAC program where faculty and professional staff members attend classes. Bailey attended in the summer 2013 semester.
“The Faculty International Development Award experience marked the first time that I would be setting foot on Central American soil, so I was excited about the prospects of being in Costa Rica and taking part in the program,” he said. “During my time there, I became one of the group of students, most of them similar to my students here at UT, and I had such a fun experience with them.”
In addition to his teaching responsibilities, Bailey plans to spend some time working on research with faculty from the Universidad Nacional de Costa Rica, his host university in Heredia.
“I would love to see my discipline, marketing, publish more work from this region, and hopefully I can get publishable work done in the short time that I will be there,” he said.
As a language aficionado, Bailey also said he looks forward to taking advantage of interacting with the Costa Rican people to improve his Spanish. Additionally, he plans to visit the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica, Limon, where a group of Jamaican descendants reside. Bailey, who is Jamaican by birth and upbringing, said the group intrigues him from a linguistic perspective.
“They speak Jamaican Creole as a result of their Jamaican roots, and their conversations are often a mix of this Jamaican Creole and Spanish, and I find it fascinating,” he said.
Bailey is set to depart Wednesday, Aug. 12, and is scheduled to return to Toledo Tuesday, Dec. 15.