On the first week of November 2013, IE Saudi Arabia Club  and the Saudi Spanish Center of Islamic ecnomics and finance  organized a trip for 18 MBA students (9 guys and 9 girls) to Saudi Arabia. Students from Japan, Colombia, El Salvador, Switzerland, USA, Mexico, Nicaragua , Costa Rica and Germany visited Saudi Arabia for the first time. The trip took place in the west coast of Saudi Arabia to the city of Jeddah (The biggest port of the red sea). The trip had to main goals: An academic goal to learn about ethical and islamic financing. The second is to get to know saudi arabia from the inside.
The Saudi Spanish Center of Islamic Economics and Finance with its partners in Saudi Arabia arrange for the academic part of the experience. The students visited the Islamic finance center in Jeddah to learn the theory behind islamic finance and then visited several banks and finance institutions to see how it’s practiced.
On the cultural aspect, Students went to a diving trip on a boat in the red sea, went to three diving sport and enjoyed the rich corals of the red sea. It was interesting to see dolphins accompanying the boat to the diving spot.
The students visited the old town of jeddah and wend to a trip to the desert where they observed a full sun ecqlipse form the open deserts of Saudi Arabia. Here is vedio clip of the trip to the desert
Visiting a saudi house was a part of the cultural experience. The students were welcomed to a homemade saudi dinner at the house of a saudi club member in Jeddah and the several Saudi Alumni Club members flow from other saudi cities to welcome the visiting IE students and present some souvenirs.
The students saw Saudi Arabia from the inside, the culture, the rich and the poor parts of the city, met local guys and girls and had interesting discussion. An observation quote is that saudi arabia went along way in its development in many aspects through is young age as a country, yet there is a lot more to do which is quite interesting to the saudis.
Special thanks from IE Saudi Arabia Club to the Saudi Ambassador to Spain and the embassy staff for all the support. Also to SCEIF staff in Madrid and Jeddah and finally to the amazing group of students who visited despite of the tight schedules.