Gies College of Business | Groups



About Us

What is Global Business Brigades (GBB)?

GBB is a Registered Student Organization within the College of Business at the University of Illinois. It is a chapter of an entirely student led international non-profit named Global Brigades. Global Brigades has 9 programs that serve in 4 countries and these programs include Medical, Water, Human Rights, Microfinance, Architecture, Dental, Environmental, Business, and Public Health brigades. GBB UIUC will take part in 3 business/micro-finance brigades in the 2018-2019 Academic school year.

Since 2004, Global Brigades has mobilized thousands of university students and professionals tough nine sill-based programs to improve quality of life in under resourced communities. It began in 2003 with a Medical Brigade from Marquette University. Since this first brigade in 2003, Global Brigades has supported over 6,000 volunteers and over 400,000 beneficiaries. GBB UIUC began in 2008, and for the past six years, has taken trips to Panama over winter and summer breaks. Membership has increased by over 100% over the last few years, and this growth is expected to continue going forward. Not to mention the leadership opportunities have expanded allowing members to develop before, during, and after the trip.

Our Mission: 

To Empower volunteers to develop sustainable solutions in under resourced communities while fostering local cultures.

Our Vision: 

To improve quality of life by igniting the largest student -led social responsibility movement at the university. If you must ask why: "In every community, there is work to be done, In every nation, there are wounds to heal. In every heart, there is the power to do it." Marianne Williamson

Leadership Team:

GBB provides its members with a plethora of opportunities to develop as both members and leaders within the organization. Members will benefit from the many social events, fundraising initiatives, and professional development opportunities after being admitted into the organization. The following positions can be acquired through an interview process that takes place at the end of each semester:

Fall Selection Period:

  • VP Finance
  • VP Corporate Relationship
  • Public Relation Chair
  • Technology Chair
  • Social Chair

Spring Selection period:

  • President
  • VP Operation
  • VP Internal
  • VP Membership Development
  • Service Chair

The club is continually adding new positions to its leadership team with the hope that we can expand our horizons and become more effectively involved in the professional and social lives of our members, as well as at the Gies College of Business. If any of our members have an idea of a new leadership team position, they are given the opportunity to present this idea for approval by the team. As of today, no ideas have been turned down, and a few examples of recently added leadership team positions are: Vice President of Membership and a second Social Chair!

Cost of Trip:

The cost of each trip is around $1,800. This does not include chapter dues ($20) and optional spending money within the country. The cost between trips will also vary due to expected flight rate variations when booking. The rough break down of the costs are as follows:

  • Flight (Two Way) - $800

  • Brigade Logistics (Food, Transportation, Residence etc) - $625

  • Medical Expenses (Shots, Medication) - $100

  • Program Specific Contributions - $100

  • Other Expenses (Cultural Gifts, Food etc) - $50

  • Insurance, Legal Fees, Taxes - $25 


While no vaccinations are required to attend either trip, the following are highly recommended: 

  • Yellow Fever

  • Typhoid

  • Hepatitis A

  • Malaria (pills recommended due to cost effectiveness)

*These can be either through McKinley Health Center or your local doctor. In order to ensure an efficient address to the above issue, set an appointment with McKinley Health Center for a Panama/Honduras travel consult. Please contact us for more information at


Please make sure that you have an updated passport. Your passport must be valid up to 6 months after your respective brigade. Ex: Members of the Winter Brigade starting on January 16 2017 must have a passport valid through at least July 16th 2017. All green card holders, American Citizens, and other students with valid US visa's can travel to Panama and Honduras without the need of a separate VISA.