Editor’s note: Hira Khalid from Pakistan is now a doctoral candidate studying Chemistry at the School of Science. Below is an article she wrote about learning in China and at Tianjin University.
China has made great efforts to bring down the wall between foreign and Chinese students at its university campuses, and also devoted much resources to support the development of talented foreigners.
Studying and living in China offers an opportunity to learn and grow with some of the best minds from the world over, and experience a fast-developing country with a fascinating culture.
Decades of economic growth have enabled the leaders of China to modernize education and turn the country into a global research hub for international students. It is the top overseas study destination for many, as the combination of creativity, growth and development, and global talent flows carries great promise.
As a doctoral student at the School of Science in Tianjin University, I have seen how Chinese universities have worked hard to cast their nets wider to draw and develop international talent.
The key to improving the standard of learning in any country is to remove the wall between local and international students, and all my Chinese professors have made great efforts to do just that. Chinese and foreign students together are enabling international cooperation, through deeper integration, lifelong friendships and growth opportunities, to truly create a home in China.
Universities are working hard to improve the experience for foreign students, taking specific care to ensure they have equal access to resources as their domestic peers. The ratio of foreign students who live separately from Chinese students has been greatly reduced. Time has changed the old mentality that rigidly separated “foreign” from “Chinese”.
International students have a good chance to benefit from a more rounded educational and social experience in China. All Chinese professors and university administrators are very helpful in this regard.
China is also spending a lot of money and resources in funding the research of international students.
Programs taught in English have been expanded and improved. More universities in China, including my own, promote an international campus environment by offering all major courses in English. My professor, for one, made huge efforts to conduct all of our scientific research group meetings in English. English proficiency has also improved among Chinese students, which helps to create a more international environment.
Of course, it would be an added positive if international students in turn mastered the Chinese language, improving communication with the Chinese people.
Studying and living in China helps one to learn and grow, and experience a fascinating culture. It has expanded my horizons, as I live, eat, play, study and work together with my Chinese friends, colleagues and professors. China is a beautiful country, and Tianjin is a second hometown to me; everyone I know here is like family. My professors have been very welcoming and warm-hearted, and my adviser has worked very hard to help me become the self-assured individual that I am today. Studying in China is an experience that I recommend to all international students looking to pursue their dreams abroad.
By HIRA KHALID