Having always been fascinated by Chinese culture, while also wanting to experience living and working in a foreign country, I jumped at the chance to join CRCC Asia’s program. I managed to win a scholarship through my university which funded a large part of my program in Shanghai. Since I’m still at university, and took part in the program during my summer holiday, I was only able to spend a month in Shanghai, but I wish I could have been there longer. That said, I still learnt a lot during my relatively short time there.
In all honesty, my internship didn’t get off to the best start. I’d applied to be in the Finance & Accountancy sector, and before I got to China, CRCC sent me the details of a company which on paper sounded great, but when I turned up was completely different to what I thought it would be. The work I was given really didn’t interest me, and I felt I was getting in the way more than anything. Luckily when I spoke to CRCC about it they were really helpful and after speaking to another company I was able to join them instead. After this switch I was a lot happier; the team I was working with were much friendlier, and I was working on things that I could actually tell were making a difference to the company. In retrospect, I think things would have improved if I’d stuck with my original company, but the important thing is CRCC are really helpful in the event you are unhappy with where you’re working and want to change.
I would absolutely recommend Shanghai to anyone wanting to go. It’s such a huge city that there’s so much going on, and you’ll definitely never be bored. In particular, there are some great bars around that offer amazing views of the city at night. I also went on a weekend trip to Hangzhou, to see the stunning west lake and mountain views. Also, before coming to Shanghai I spent some time in Beijing which was also an amazing city, and somewhere I’d definitely recommend visiting if you get the chance.