Alumnus donates $250,000 to support international study

James P. Bush ’80 encourages business students to learn through cultural exploration
Rachel Stengel '14
Alumnus donates $250,000 to support international study

James P. Bush '80 and his wife Nancy with their three children at the CBA Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. 

James P. Bush ’80 and his wife, Nancy, have pledged $250,000 in support of international study for Rider business students.

They understand the transformative experience another country and culture can have on a person and want to ensure students have the same opportunity.

"Traveling to another country is the best learning experience one can have. For those that don’t have the means, I want to afford them the opportunity to better understand how business works internationally," Bush says.

The gift will support the International Immersion Endowment, which helps remove financial barriers and enables students to participate in the College of Business Administration’s International Study Tours.

"We are incredibly appreciative of Jim and Nancy's generous support for international study opportunities. Their gift will allow more Rider students to experience today's globally connected world," says Karin Klim, vice president for University Advancement.

An accounting major at Rider, Bush never had the chance to study abroad and had limited travel outside the U.S. until 2001, when he became the regional president of Japan, Asia-Pacific and Australia for American Express. With a limited understanding of the culture, geography or language of the region, he and his family relocated to Singapore for four years.

"It changed the perspective of our family and exposed us to what the world has to offer," he says. "The world is so interconnected and the opportunity to engage with people from other cultures was an incredible learning experience."

Now the senior advisor to the CEO and chairman, Bush has traveled to every continent except Antarctica in his various roles at American Express. He has been with the company since 1986 and most recently was the president of Global Network and International Consumer Services (GNICS) at American Express. GNICS includes consumer business outside the U.S. and all global bank partnerships in 130 countries and territories. Under his leadership, GNICS has become one of the fastest growing divisions of American Express.

Bush was one of the inaugural inductees into the College of Business Administration's Hall of Fame in May. He was honored for his steadfast commitment to customer service and continual leadership at American Express. Under his leadership, American Express earned eight consecutive J.D. Power & Associates awards for highest customer satisfaction among U.S. card companies.

Bush is also invested in exposing students to various aspects of business. For the past three years, Bush has hosted Rider students at American Express' New York City office.

"It's always inspiring to engage with the students," he says. "To experience their energy and passion is a gift."