The CEA CAPA Faculty Spotlight is a monthly series highlighting the individuals who teach courses and provide academic instruction at our global education centers in different study abroad locations across the world. Their teaching leaves a mark on students who study abroad. This month, we meet Thomas Brownlees from our Florence location.
WHICH COURSE(S) DO YOU TEACH AT CEA CAPA?
Thomas Brownlees: At CEA CAPA I’ve had the opportunity to teach a variety of classes including International Economics, International Marketing, Strategic Communication, and Social Media.
WHAT ARE YOUR ACADEMIC INTERESTS AND FOCUS?
Brownlees: My areas of academic interest primarily revolve around Customer Journey Analysis, Omnichannel Distribution, and Branding Strategies for heritage and luxury companies. I find that a cultural lens can be very helpful in gaining insights into customer behavior and understanding what type of value a product or service holds for its intended audience.
WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR PROFESSIONAL HIGHLIGHTS?
Brownlees: Aside from my teaching responsibilities I am a marketing consultant, helping businesses bring their vision to market and identify new market opportunities aside from the more competitive spaces. I also run a publishing business focused on fashion, music, and technology.
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN TEACHING FOR CEA CAPA?
Brownlees: I have now been teaching for CEA CAPA for more than four years, and I am very happy with the positive and engaging environment the organization provides to faculty and staff alike.
PLEASE SHARE SOMETHING UNIQUE ABOUT YOUR CLASS OR ACADEMIC DISCIPLINE
Brownlees: I think that my focus in class is to help students not only acquire the content, but to understand it through the lens of their experience abroad. By being new to Italy, students are able to rediscover themselves and the courses provided by CEA CAPA can be a very fruitful source of reflection that will enrich them for years to come.
WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT TEACHING STUDY ABROAD STUDENTS?
Brownlees: I like the fact that students, as they’re coming from different colleges and states in the US, get to bring to the class their own perspectives and viewpoints. In many cases, on topics of relevance, I get to become a facilitator, rather than a teacher, helping them express themselves and learn from each other.
About Thomas Brownlees
Thomas Brownlees is a business lecturer and consultant with over 10 years of experience in international education. His role at CEA CAPA involves creating and delivering business courses aimed at international students through highly engaging and practice-oriented classes. Thomas’s main area of expertise is marketing and entrepreneurship, but in lectures he strives to address current and pressing topics such as sustainability and innovation in business. Thomas has a BA in commercial law, a master’s degree in business management, and an MBA from Durham University.
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