What have you done in addition to your degree to enhance your employability and what do you feel you’ve gained from this?
In April 2014 I took part in the ‘Study China’ program. Study China takes students out to a city in China for 3 weeks to participate in a short term exchange to study in a university. I was taken to Beijing and loved every minute of it.
The experience helped me in so many ways, it wetted my appetite for travel especially. I really enjoyed being immersed into a foreign culture and learning so much about a country which, I feel, is misrepresented here in Western society. The Chinese are an incredibly kind, polite, hard-working, and gracious people and I felt nothing but welcome and valued there.
I studied both Mandarin and Chinese politics whilst in Beijing and got assessed in both at the end of my stay. I had to sit a written and oral Mandarin test as well as prepare and execute a half hour group presentation on a politics topic. I really appreciated the politics module especially. I learned so much about the countries complex history and political situation but it was not a one way knowledge transfer.
The lecturers who were teaching us were also incredibly interested in what we had to say about where we came from and stated that China wanted to learn from people like us who could improve their own situation. I really admired this and made me only think higher of them as a people.
One thing I am eternally grateful to Study China for is the incredible friends I made there. The sense of togetherness I felt with my friends out there was amazing and I know I will keep some of them with me as friends for a very long time into the future. It was an amazing and unparalleled experience and I would advise it to anyone.
Making use of Careers, Employability and Skills at Queen’s
I have taken advantage of the career guidance in Queen’s. This helped me greatly in deciding what I wanted to do after university and would advise anyone who isn’t sure about where they want to go to do the same. It is extremely helpful talking one to one with a professional who can give expert advice on possible options open to you.
Any advice for other Queen's students?
Enjoy university life to its fullest and take any opportunities open to you as these are unique to university students. You will grow as a person because of them.