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Marian Dino (Law and Accounting) – China Internship Programme 2015

"The time that I spent in China has provided me with invaluable experiences on a personal and professional level.

I came across the CRCC programme when a university lecturer of mine encouraged me to apply for one of the scholarships on offer. I was immediately attracted to the prospect of working and learning in China. I was extremely lucky enough to win a partial scholarship at this chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to live and work in China has many benefits, specifically gaining work experience that will benefit me in future job prospects.

I worked in a company called LegalMall which is a subsidiary of Ray Yin & Partners. It deals with foreign clients looking to establish a business presence in China or to deal with a legitimate Chinese business. It provides services such as company verification, certificate verification, finding a lawyer, recommending a supplier and providing free consultation.

During my internship most of my time at the beginning was spent redesigning and making changes to the company website.

From making sure the layout is clear and user-friendly, to what the text would actually say on each webpage to attract more clients. I never did any marketing before so that was a good learning experience. I also enjoyed researching about and writing the business article on Alibaba. I enjoyed the independence during this task as I was required to use my own initiative regarding the research about the topic. I learned a lot more about current business news on online trading in China which I found very interesting. Furthermore, the opportunity to learn from a Chinese perspective on business has helped me develop as a young professional.

The company that I worked for encouraged team work in different projects so that was an added bonus to be able to say I’ve done teamwork projects in China.

I think in most western countries, having an international work experience especially in a country that is fast-paced and vibrant like China is becoming more highly regarded these days. Learning and adapting to a completely new culture and a different way of doing business really is a priceless life achievement. It shows to prospective employers you can adjust to a new situation and you are willing to learn new things and gain a different perspective in life. I feel like this would really boost my CV and help me to really stand out from the crowd.

I am very grateful to CRCC for the amazing opportunity they gave me and must I say the best summer of my life. They were literally like a parent and a close friend at the same time. From picking us up at the ferry port to providing us with a local sim card and a book guide showing must-see local tourist places and restaurants; their level of help and guidance was definitely above and beyond my expectations.

They took away the unnecessary worry and stress that living abroad on your own can bring. This made me focus more on important things like going to every networking event and really getting myself out there. These events helped me build confidence when engaging with people of all cultures and statures. In any walk of life, the experience of these engagements are beneficial as you never know what doors they may open.

The best part of my experience in China was the other interns from all over the world I was lucky to meet. They have the same drive and ambition, and are also goal-oriented individuals like myself. They inspired and taught me that I need to get out there more, travel, and learn more. Building relationships through networking connections is the most basic and central part of doing business in China. Through this, not only do you get by day-to-day activities, you really advance yourself when it comes to achieving goals or seeking business or personal advice.

I would strongly recommend interning in China and applying for any scholarships that may be on offer. Students from the School of Law, University of Limerick, are very lucky to be presented with such fantastic opportunities to work or study abroad and gain invaluable experiences to develop oneself both personally and professionally.

It is never too early to start applying for various opportunities at home or abroad even if you’re just a first-year student. There are endless possibilities for you if you take the initiative and apply for any opportunity that appeals to you, whether it might sound crazy and completely irrelevant to what you’re doing right now or what you think you want to do in the future. Every opportunity is relevant if it is a life experience and you can take away something from it and learn a valuable life lesson.

Personally, I would encourage anybody to try new experiences. If anybody has the opportunity to embark on this amazing adventure, I would encourage them to embrace it. It is important to come with an open mind and with the right attitude, you will most definitely enjoy your time in China. With its rich culture, fascinating history and very hospitable locals, it is hard not to fall in love with this beautiful country."