I’d always been interested in visiting China after hearing about the culture and industry from relatives and friends who’d travelled there, as such I was very keen to see it for myself. I first heard of CRCC Asia when they attended a careers fair at my university. When I learnt that they had programmes for engineering I decided that I would apply for the program. From the locations available, I believed that Shenzhen was the most suitable choice considering my background of studying electronic engineering.
My internship was with a telecommunications company called HiPad who design, implement, and test mobile phones and software. For the first half of my internship I was assigned to develop a Bluetooth messaging app with other CRCC Asia interns in HiPad. In the second month of my internship, I was taken to the hardware testing laboratory, where I witnessed the production stages of the units. While I was in the laboratory I was able to test the Bluetooth, GSM, and Wi-Fi functions for some of the prototypes to determine whether they met the characteristic standards, using multiple testing instruments. As I am more hardware based, I found the first task quite challenging, with my little experience in the field of software at first. However, over time I gradually improved my skills to overcome and present the project to my supervisor. I found my experience rewarding as I believe I have more initiative than I previously did, when working both as part of a team and individually. The staff at HiPad were more than welcoming to me from my first day to my final day. Although there were only a few members of staff that spoke a fluent English, any troubles or complications that I experienced were quickly resolved. Some colleagues also invited me along to their activities outside of work, which was a great way to explore activities to do in Shenzhen.
As there were many other interns across the world participating there were plenty of social activities to do in our free time, with the chance to make new friends during my internship. There were quite a few Chinese national holidays that allowed us to travel outside of Shenzhen and see some of the rural side of China, as Shenzhen is more of a modern industrial city. The nightlife is also a great experience in China, with a lively and charismatic environment. There is also plenty of choice when it comes to food, and the metro is very straightforward to use for transportation.
The CRCC Asia team were very helpful throughout my time in China. From helping me prepare for my journey, along with any enquiries that I had once in China. The team also arranged multiple events to educate and entertain us, with weekly mandarin classes and local events, such as community outreach events and a Kung-Fu class. CRCC Asia really helped ensure that I had the best experience, and has also made me more open to working in China again in the future. I would recommend this program to anyone not only as a CV booster that will help make you stand out more when applying for graduate programmes, but also as an excellent opportunity to experience another culture.