Chris Lanterman

Yvonne Wilkie
26th April 2012
Ellen Huang
2nd May 2012

If you’re looking for a great program to have fun, get good work experience, meet new people, and go somewhere new, you should definitely consider CRCC Asia.  Whether you’re still an undergraduate (university for non-Americans), in a graduate program, or in a working career with some time off, CRCC Asia can tailor their program to fit your needs.

One of my biggest regrets in college was not doing a semester abroad.  While I’m currently in law school getting my JD, I also decided to get my masters in Chinese Law as as well, and when I saw this opportunity to work at a Chinese law firm, I jumped on it.  Finding a place to live, emailing random law firms looking for work, getting your cell phone to work, and finding a good Chinese school is such a hassle, but I saw that CRCC Asia was a highly touted, internationally recognized company that offered to handle all of these things for you.

I was in Shanghai for three months, and I spent the first month learning Chinese and the next two months working at a Chinese law firm.  The first month was great as it allowed me to explore Shanghai, and my Chinese also improved markedly.  My teachers were very friendly and helpful, and I received a recording word document of every lesson.  The next two months, I was busy working at a law firm, but still took 4-6 hours of Chinese lessons every week because I didn’t want to waste the opportunity to learn Chinese seeing as how I had such an excellent rapport with my teachers.

Some of the things I was concerned about with working in China was that I wouldn’t have enough work, or I’d have too much, or the work would be too menial, or the work would be good, but it wouldn’t necessarily translate well with a job in the US.    While these were legitimate concerns, none of my fears came true.  My coworkers were excellent, and the type of work I was doing was not only interesting, but applicable to US law firms as well.  I worked on a lot of contract drafting such as purchasing of goods, export/import contracts, legal services contracts, employment contracts, etc.  I also worked on raising capital for immigration in the US.  One of the things the US offers is an EB-5 program which allows an investor who invests $500,000 into the US economy and creates 10 jobs to obtain a green card.  In this case, we were raising capital fo ra ski resort.  This was fun because it touched many different areas of law such as immigration law, employment law, due diligence, construction law, trusts, etc.

While CRCC Asia offers many events, I’ll be honest, I didn’t go to a lot of them.  It wasn’t because they didn’t seem fun though, it was because I was so busy networking on my own, learning Chinese, and working that I didn’t have time.

The CRCC Asia experience is what you make of it, if you are like me and really want to work, learn Chinese, and secure a job or future internship, then this will be a good experience for you, but if you want to have fun, get some work experience, go to trendy bars, and experience a different culture, then CRCC Asia is still the right company for you as well.  I had some great roommates from Australia, Argentina, and South Africa, and while we all came in with different goals and experiences, I feel pretty safe in saying that we all thoroughly enjoyed our experience.

Overall, I’d say this experience worked out great for me.  I wanted to see if working in China was something I would be interested in, and it turns out that it definitely is.  Because of this, I’m working in Shanghai again this summer for one of the top Chinese law firms.  I’ll be going back to the same Chinese teachers I was with before, and now that I know which places are good to live, it’ll be much easier for me to find an apartment for the summer.If you’re interested in working abroad but don’t know how to do it, or which program to choose from, I highly recommend CRCC Asia.