By Kayla Perry, Editor-in-Chief
“A lot of people want to go to Europe, but that’s a very expensive trip. I found Shanghai, China, was a great trip.”
These are the remarks of Curtis Byron, a third-year Commerce student. Byron was one of two Laurentian University students who travelled to Shanghai, China, in July 2015 as part of a unique partnership with Shanghai University.
The partnership brings several exchange agreements between Laurentian and China: just as Bryon travelled to China, up to twenty-five Zhejiang University of Finance and Economic (ZUFE) students have/will travel to Ontario to attend Laurentian and earn a second degree.
Furthermore, Shanghai University and Laurentian have begun a partnership formally called 2+2 BBA (Business Administration), through which students from Shanghai University will transfer up to 60 transfer credits from Shanhai to LU, and will complete another 60 credits at LU over the course of two or more years, thus receiving a bachelor degree from Laurentian University.
“This kind of opportunity is good for students, to build friendships from different countries, to open their mind to different countries and markets,” said Xiao Xiang (Hugo) Chen, Laurentian University International program manager.
“Our faculty is very eager and motivated to help promote and inform students about this program.”
Byron said the fifteen-day trip was an “unreal” experience which offered unique educational, cultural and business perspectives.
“I think for other students that want to go, they have to realize that if you’re going to travel there, it’s very student friendly – you can get meals for ten dollars, and you don’t have to spend a lot of money.”
While abroad, Byron also attended a series of lectures at the university given by Shanghai professors, and met with other international students who had travelled from Australia and Russia to attend the two-week course.
This exchange opportunity is only one of many offered: international trips to Croatia and France are also available. All courses abroad are offered in English, to ensure that language is not a barrier between students and professors.
Stephen Havlovic, Dean of the Faculty of Management, said this particular program is geared towards Faculty of Management students, although other students who may be are interested in this sort of opportunity are invited to contact the faculty.
The minimum grade average to apply for the international trip is a B average.
Some funding opportunities are also available through applications.
“The job market is very competitive, so anything that a student can do to differentiate themselves in terms of their qualifications is good. Particularly, for students who want to go into international business, I’ve noticed that if they don’t have these types of experiences they tend to get passed over. It’s important for students to differentiate themselves, and this is a good way to do so,” said Havlovic.
Correction: This is a corrected story. A previous version ran in the print edition of The Lambda, published Sept. 29, and mistook the agreement between Laurentian University and Shanghai University, and the agreement between Zhejiang University of Finance and Economic (ZUFE) and Laurentian University. This has been clarified above.
-Photos supplied by Curtis Byron