An internship in China offers a world of new opportunities in life, one which can radically enhance your perspective and insight into the world. As one of the world’s most rapidly growing economies and centres of business, there are numerous opportunities to undertake an internship in a range of sectors. With so much to gain, we want to set out the case for you as to why you should seek opportunities in China, weighing up the benefits against questions and concerns
Experiencing a new world
China is one of the world’s oldest civilizations, having developed millennia before many in Europe. It fosters a powerful culture and way of life which has captured the imagination of millions around the globe. An internship experience in China offers an opportunity to explore this history and culture. Witness the many historical sites around the country, the fascinating architecture, a beautifully scripted language and delicious food; all with its own distinct character from region to region. The character of China is capable of growing upon any visitor. We guarantee it will leave a strong impression of you and a sense of awe.
Networking, learning and discovering
The opportunity to intern in China offers the chance to create a new series of friendships and networks which can enrich you for the rest of your life. China’s culture is a ultimately a culture of networks, or “guanxi” 关系 as it is called. Forming, maintaining and reaching out to your guanxi network is all part of the fun of Chinese life and your work overall. Business is about socializing, which makes it all the more exciting!
Chinese society never stops. Life is perpetual, with endless opportunities for food, drink and nightlife. From high end restaurants to local street food, there is so much to try. Have you ever thought about eating Chicken’s feet? Or a baby pigeon? Well, welcome to Chinese life! Your internship experience is about learning a new way of life, complete with new discoveries!
Whilst here, do not miss the opportunity to learn about the country you’re in either. Mandarin Chinese is the world’s most spoken language in terms of native speakers, it is solidifying its place as a language of business and a language of the future. It is a skill that will greatly propel your career. In China, there are courses and opportunities to learn everywhere! The Chinese people love it when foreigners learn their language, which can quickly add into the aspect of making friendships and networks (as stated above!).
But don’t just stay in one place either. China is more akin to a continent than a country, with many regions, local cultures and varieties. Outside of the urban sprawls of Beijing and Shanghai, set out to discover the lush Sichuan plain, the legendary Mountains of Tibet, the tropical south of Hainan and the freezing, icy paths of Harbin and Heilongjiang. China is a country of geo-graphic extremes. Take advantage of growing high speed links to travel around the country quickly and swiftly, witnessing a country of both great beauty and diversity.
Huge career opportunities
China’s economy is growing in global significance. To have experience in China on your resume is a statement that you’re capable, open and versed in international business. As stated above, networks are essential and with China growing as it is, it is important we adapt and ready ourselves for a changing world. An internship in China can ready yourself for a world of opportunities. The professional experience of a China internship can take you a long way. It is ultimately priceless.
But what about the government?
China is not only one of the world’s most remarkable and unique countries, but it is also one of the world’s most misunderstood countries too. China stems from an entirely different cultural, philosophical and political tradition to the west, one which often entails a completely different understanding of how a society should be ordered or how things ought to be done. Sometimes in the western world, we have the habit of judging China by “our view” of the world, or assuming China “should be like us”, but this is incredibly narrow minded. Part of doing an internship in China is understanding what China is and how it works, ultimately respecting it on its own terms. Despite having a system some people criticize, China is a thriving, increasingly modern and successful nation, one which in coming years may suppress that of western countries. Not only is China’s economy growing, but it the nation is surging in technological and scientific innovation. We assume we know what is “good” for the Chinese people, yet they are happy, hard-working and increasingly prosperous. It is important we are open minded about China. An internship is ultimately about what you can learn, rather than attempting to impose your values and picture of the world onto a country that you know so little about. Never have our interns had any problem with the authorities, or found their experience limited accordingly because of politics. Thus, to intern in China means you are ensured an objective experience which can ultimately challenge the way you think.