Robert J. Trulaske Sr., College of Business, University of Missouri

International Trade Center

Testimonials & Success Stories



“The support and assistance of everyone at the International Trade Center has been outstanding. From putting us in touch with the right organizations and expertise to assist with answering technical questions, to customizing research to identify market opportunities, our relationship with the ITC has enabled us to make informed key strategic decisions as we roll out international sales efforts.”

— Rob McCoy, President
Silgan Plastic Food Containers, Union, Mo.


“This program has helped my company tremendously. From assisting with market expansion activities, facilitating background checks, and helping us verify documentation and compliance requirements, I could not have asked for a better team to help me with the international side of things. Not only has the ITC provided excellent customer service, but their research and findings have proven extremely useful and have helped increase our sales internationally.”

— Marcus Solomon, Director of Sales and 
BeWell Health, LLC, home of Nasopure!, Columbia, Mo.


“The St. Louis Economic Development Partnership is enormously pleased with the International Market Sector Research as prepared by the MU International Trade Center student intern team.  We consider this analysis and report to be of high professional quality, with sufficient specificity to enable businesses a sound start in their efforts to launch marketing efforts in Central Europe.  It was a pleasure to be included in this program, and we extend our best wishes to the students, and to the faculty and advisors who made it such an impressive success.”
– John Hixson, Vice President Advanced Manufacturing,
St. Louis Economic Development Partnership


“The MU International Trade Center arranged for two groups of students to evaluate our company’s competitiveness in the global marketplace.  Both groups prepared professional-quality presentations.  Though the recommendations where not positive, the effort saved us thousands in market research.  We would highly recommend this opportunity to other businesses interested in evaluating global market opportunities for their buisness.”


                                                                                     – Daniell Hill, Environmental Health & Safety Manager, Mayco Industries.

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Student Success Stories


Jonathan Osburn

Senior, earning a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing, from Milwaukee, WI

During my internship experience (Summer 2015), I was given the opportunity to do internal marketing work for ITC.  I was put in situations to represent ITC, and help them gain more exposure through different economic development groups in Missouri.  ITC gave me the chance to grow my professionalism and decision making skills as I was put in situations that were beneficial to the early developments of marketing materials. I recommend students participate in the internship program because with an established global mindset developed abroad, students can do hands on market research to help make a positive impact for Missouri businesses expanding globally.

International Experiences:
Study Abroad – Prague, Czech Republic
Internship - Marketing project for the MU International Trade Center


Stephen Westfall

Senior, earning a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration with an emphasis in Management and Entrepreneurship, from St. Charles, MO

The internship experience was very rewarding. I was able to develop my teamwork and leadership abilities while completing a project that was valuable to the company. It was rewarding to know that what I was working on would provide a real benefit to an organization, giving me a sense of pride in my work. This real world exposure helped me realize what it will be like to have a career in this area and it gave me tools I will need to be successful in the future.

International Experience:
Internship - Silgan Plastic Food Container


Taylor DeBok

Senior, earning a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing, from O’Fallon, MO

Internship - Silgan Plastic Food Containers in Union, MO

This was the second research project complete by ITC interns for Silgan. We completed more detailed research and analysis of six potential target markets identified in the first round in fall 2014. We were tasked with recommending two countries with the greatest market potential for Silgan.

I gained insight into how to look at business on a global level and what is involved in getting a U.S. product into a new global market. The internship provided me with the opportunity to learn how to conduct international research, practice how to effectively analyze and evaluate information and determine what data is important and not important. 

As a result, I am now more comfortable and confident in my skills and my ability to help a business make informed and critical decisions. Standing up in front of the president of a large, successful manufacturing organization and confidently responding to his questions based upon our research was daunting yet empowering at the same time. It is very rewarding to know that something I did for a large business really mattered – my research made an impact. I gained self-confidence and validation that the theories and concepts I’ve been learning in class are indeed relevant. 

I loved being part of the research team that worked on this project. I saw firsthand the value of working together and meshing complimentary skill sets. As a result of this experience I was motivated to join the MU International Trade Business Association where I now serve as an officer.

I made invaluable connections through this experience. I established long term connections with the Company representatives and ITC staff that I believe will serve me well in my career. I was also able to prepare for the Certified Global Business Professional (CGBP) exam and have the opportunity to sit for that credential with the support of the ITC soon.


Yi Gan

Currently earning an MBA in 2016, from Chengdu, China

Internship - Silgan Plastic Food Containers, Union, MO

In the fall of 2014, I completed preliminary market research for Silgan to identify international markets with potential for their plastic food containers. In spring 2015, I supervised the student project team in completing more detailed research on six target markets. At the conclusion of the project, we made recommendations on two priority markets research which indicated they held the greatest opportunity for Silgan.

I learned a great deal about research methodology – the how to’s of conducting international market research and using data to aid in making international market decisions. I also gained first-hand knowledge of several data sources such as the UN’s Comtrade and the World Bank Databank. I wasn’t aware these public access sites existed, but know now they are excellent sources to help rank markets and determine potential.

Touring Silgan, visiting with top management representatives and interacting with them throughout the course of the project were invaluable experiences. Presenting the report and responding to questions reinforced the need to prepare, and helped me think on my feet, too.

My communication skills were also enhanced, particularly the ability to solicit input from company representatives regarding the next steps or phase they desired our research to take.

I really appreciate the support provided by the International Trade Center staff – Sandra Marin, Larry Dill, Jackie Rasmussen, Pablo Arroyo and Gay Albright. They were extremely knowledgeable, very personable and very supportive.

I plan to sit for the Certified Global Business Professional (CGBP) exam in December 2015 and hope to add this credential to my resume prior to graduating.


Daniel Rustemeyer

Senior, Trulaske College of Business - Finance & Economics


My experience with the International Trade Center provided me with a hands-on internship in which every day was purposeful. The report my team created is something I can be proud of and reference in future job interviews. Overall it was a great experience!

Hannah Marcolla

Senior, Trulaske College of Business - Accounting
Thank you to the MU International Trade Center for everything this summer.  I learned & grew so much from this valuable experience.