My Dunedin Itinerary

Scholarship winners prepare for Shanghai business exchange

30 August 2016

Three Otago Polytechnic business students are preparing to head to China on a 14-week exchange programme, after receiving prestigious Prime Minister’s Scholarships for Asia.

The Scholarships seek to strengthen educational and business ties between New Zealand and its Asian trading partners, and to improve the internationals skills of the New Zealand workforce.

Suhail Toubat (23), Lee Ralph (26) and Fredrika Robertson (21) will attend the Shanghai University of International Business and Economics (SUIBE) to study business, economics, finance, business law, management and Chinese language and culture.

The students are excited about the experience, and are brushing up on some basic Mandarin as they prepare to depart Dunedin for Shanghai this week.“I’m looking forward to discovering whatever it is that makes Chinese business so strong,” says Suhail. “I also hope to make some connections that I can develop further while I’m there or once I return home to New Zealand.” He adds, “I’m also filling up on fish and chips as I prepare for four months in an unfamiliar country!”

Lee Ralph is keen to experience business study in China. “I’m looking forward to learning in a completely different environment and one where business is such a strength. I’ve also previously holidayed in Shanghai, so I’m excited about returning and exploring the city and local culture in more depth.”

For Fredrika Robertson, the key appeal of the exchange was the prospect of “learning about Chinese culture and how the incredible city of Shanghai does business with the rest of the world. And also to make connections that will last a lifetime.”

Otago Polytechnic’s International Study Abroad and Exchange Coordinator, Elizabeth White, says the experience will be an enriching one for the three students.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to study business in China, and to develop the skills required for undertaking business there in the future,” she says. “The students will be able to make valuable connections and establish networks in the business community of Shanghai.”

The students will depart Dunedin on Thursday 1 September.