Franklin students come from all over the globe, speak many languages, represent different nationalities, foster and express distinct cultures, and uphold various traditions.
Yet they all share the same desires and ambitions. They are explorers, seeking to engage the world with confidence and curiosity. They study international and interdisciplinary relevant topics on humanity, sustainability, innovation, social justice, the future, and much more. They commit to excelling academically to one day land a dream-true professional career. Last but not least, they stand together, support and cheer on one another, and grow up as part of a tight-knit, worldwide community, the Franklin family.
This is their story, and today, Franklin introduces Carmen.
What is your name, where are you from, and what year are you attending at Franklin?
My name is Carmen Brodnax and I come from Jackson, Tennessee, United States. I am attending Franklin University Switzerland as a graduate student, working on my Master of Science in International Management with an emphasis in Responsible Management and Climate Action.
What is your cultural background?
Both of my parents are American. I grew up in the southern part of the United States but never picked up the accent. I later lived in the Midwest for 9 years and I think that this place truly resonated with me, since I sound like I am from there more than anything. However, the United States became too mundane for me, so I decided to follow my dream of moving to Europe.
Why did you choose Franklin?
I chose Franklin for the unique and interesting graduate program in Responsible Management and Climate Action in conjunction with the United Nations, in particular the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR). Before Franklin, I had been working for a green energy company and really wanted to stay in this industry, learn more about it and study further to help build towards a better future. I think this program in conjunction with the United Nations presented as one of the best opportunities for me to pursue.
What is your favorite thing at Franklin so far?
I absolutely love the classroom style and the friendliness of everyone at Franklin.
What are your aspirations for the future, and how is Franklin teaching you to become a successful professional?
I aspire to become a decisive contributor for a better world to live in through more sustainable management. I therefore hope to find myself in a position in which I am passionate about a role that will promote positive and more sustainable world progress. I am not sure exactly what that will be just yet, but from what I am learning about myself, leadership, and sustainability here at Franklin, I am confident I will choose something worthwhile and make a difference in benefiting humanity.
What is the value that you believe mostly represents Franklin and why?
Creativity – it fosters new ideas, change, and importantly growth. We are a small institution but the amount of student-curated activities and student involvement is beautiful. Within the first few weeks here, I learned about student clubs and organizations and that there was a need for a dance team, so a classmate of mine started the signups on the spot. I love how Franklin it is about experiential education but also promoting constructive avenues of entertainment on-campus, which enables you to grow both professionally and personally.
What is the Franklin experience for you?
In my Master’s program, I would say a dynamic atmosphere and distinct style for learning. I appreciate that even though there are different specializations within the international management theme of the Master of Science, we as a class are learning and attending the core courses altogether, in the same room, to enable us all to develop a strong background, while each of our chosen emphasis are lightly brought into each conversation. Next semester, we will be split into our individually focused three path of studies, Climate Action, Digital Transformation and Sustainable Food Systems.
What is your proudest accomplishment and why?
Taking the risk and changing my life by perusing my desire for continued studies. Before choosing Franklin, I worked in a corporate environment for 5 years and like many, became unhappy with where my life was. I decided to take a chance and uproot my life in 3 months, traveling to Europe and studying French. Because of the pandemic, my studies were cut short and I was still left with the desire for further education. Fast forward 10 months and I am happy to say that that decision has lead me to Franklin.
How would your friends describe you?
Cheerful, energetic and always helpful.
What motivates you and why?
Being able to grow and discover things that can help shape my future really motivates me. A close second is food.