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Internship Program in Shanghai
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Internship Program in Shanghai

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Internship Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Work Environment

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

Internships in Shanghai

My experience in Shanghai with CRCC Asia is one I am very grateful for. The opportunity to live and work in a culture so vastly different than my own is one that very few people get to experience. Not only have I boosted my employability but also my life experience. The memories made are some that will last a lifetime as they were once in a lifetime.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Internship Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Work Environment

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

Marketing intern in Shanghai!

Working as a marketing intern for Haizol I quickly began to see where my personal strengths and weaknesses lie. After turning in assignment after assignment I would keep getting the similar positive feedback from my manager. This has helped me achieve a sense of self-actualization as I had quickly identified my constant short-comings when looking for feedback on any piece of work I produced for the company. Being the only westerner working for Haizol it had forced me to practise my Chinese speaking as most of my colleagues spoke little or no English whatsoever. As I continue to further develop my command of Mandarin at university this year I feel like I have seen a significant improvement on the quality of Chinese I can produce for my lecturer to assess. This is due to spending two months in China being immersed in the lovely culture and people in Shanghai. All the knowledge I gained in China is directly translatable to all of my subjects back home as I can further understand how to best approach the many obstacles I face throughout the year.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Internship Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Work Environment

    9

  • Health & Safety

    8

  • Social Life

    10

Great overall experience- that I still think about today!

Having spent two years as an investment banking analyst in London- I had come to the conclusion a career in finance wasn't for me, so I decided to look at all possible options of a 'career reset'. Upon doing some research I came across CRCC Asia and the opportunities they offered for guaranteed internships.

I felt this was the perfect chance to try a marketing role- despite having no previous understanding or experience in the industry- and also to add an international dimension to my CV. During my initial advising telephone conversation, I outlined a long-standing interest in the airline industry and the advisor mentioned they had just secured a partnership with airline host company and that I could be put forward for a possible internship in their marketing department.

The entire process was professionally handled, and whilst I was made aware they were no guarantees with that specific company- it was great to know that CRCC Asia would ensure I was placed in one of my sectors of choice. It completely eradicates the most stressful aspect of job-hunting- the process of finding and applying for jobs!

About 4 weeks before going to China, I was informed I had successfully been placed at the aforementioned airline- and it happened to be Virgin Atlantic! I was extremely impressed by the strong placement and the fact it was also within the marketing team (as per my first choice).

When I arrived in Shanghai- it was for the Feb 2013 intake- so there were fewer participants than the summer- but if anything this made the experience even more rewarding as all of us got to know each other a lot more and became a very close knit group. In total there were about 15 participants - mainly from the UK, Australia, and the US.

Socially, the experience was unbelievable. Outside of work, the group went out at the weekends, explored the city, took day-trips to Hangzhou and Suzhou, and generally become inseparable. Everyone has their own personality, but the best thing is that everyone is like-minded. We had all given up jobs/studies in our home country to come half way around the world to explore a new and different culture! And fundamentally this made it such a joy to spend two months with people who to this day (4 years on) I still consider many of them my close friends (our 'China crew' still has it's dedicated WhatsApp group- and we still meet up regularly to remember the experience - and the oh so many stories!)

On a professional basis, the experience was equally rewarding for me as I was given an insight into the variety of projects and campaigns the Virgin team were involved in. During my 2 months, I was involved in several Virgin- sponsored events including the Shanghai F1 Grand Prix, Shanghai Fashion Show, and James Bond Skyfall Exhibition (where I got to meet the Bond producers!). From the event-management side, I was also given the project of organising a dedicated Scottish-themed event for 50 of Virgin's agency clients to launch its new routes to Aberdeen/Glasgow- the autonomy of this project had me sourcing suppliers, venue, arranging the actual on-the-day logistics, and working the London marketing team to ensure relevant PR. Alongside this, I was exposed to day-to-day implementation tasks for Virgin's high profile 'Flying in the Face of The Ordinary' campaign- whereby I learnt how digital and physical marketing channels were tailored to a Chinese audience. In addition my time at Virgin coincided with the airlines 'April Fool's' PR prank- whereby the airline claimed to have developed a 'glass bottom' plane- and my manager was responsible for launching the PR aspect of this in China which got picked up by CCTV and reported as a genuine news story - thus generating worldwide attention! Overall the work experience was invaluable in terms of its insight and the fact I got a glimpse of the various marketing strands of a major organisation.

Throughout the program, CRCC Asia also organised various events for us - notably a KTV and dumpling-making session, which to this day my friends and I still talk about! Whilst I needed to rely on the CRCC Asia team for support- I always felt they were there and available if I ever required them. The communication on the ground between the team and the participants was clear but not overbearing- which meant participants still had a sense of independence without feeling patronised.

Overall, I cannot speak highly enough about the experience. For some, the biggest issue will be the funding concerns- which is totally understandable, but if you can secure the funds it's such a great experience - socially and professionally- it's something you will never regret.

How can this program be improved?
The only improvement I would suggest is actually the post-program aspect. Having had a such a great experience I was keen to share this with others, and also meet other participants on the program, but so far the opportunities to do so have been limited.