On the 5th of June, 2020 from 14:15-15:30 the Students Association held a “Culture Sharing” event which was open for foreign and local students. The main purpose of this event was to discuss the cultural features of Taiwan, both from the point of view of foreign students and from the point of view of Taiwanese students. People from Germany, Netherlands, Poland, Taiwan and few other countries took part in the activity. The host of the event was Hsiao Yu Fen, Mandarin teacher at Chinese Language Center of NSYSU.
During the event, we discussed topics such as foreigners’ impression of taiwanese people, main differences between Taiwan and the home country of each student, what people like the most about Taiwan, and what they are not happy with about Taiwan. Due to the fact that the event was intimate without a large number of attendees, all students had an opportunity to share their own stories about Taiwan and felt comfortable within each other. Justine Pura told students about his first experience with meeting Taiwanese people. According to Justine, he was struggling to get to the airport in Taipei, and since it was his first time visiting Taiwan, he basically got lost. Since he did not know anyone, he decided to ask people on the street. One kind old lady not only explained to him the best way to get to the airport, but also helped Justine to find the right bus station and even waited with him until the needed bus arrived.
Another astonishing story was told by Zhanna Samodurova. She mentioned that after arriving in Taipei, it was a rainy day and Zhanna was trying to find accommodation, along with a few of her friends. During the day they went to a cafe for food and after finishing their meal decided to move on. However, at that point they did not have any umbrellas. Noticing this the owner of the cafe ran after them under the rain with two umbrellas and gave it to them for free. This situation was so touching for Zhanna that she fell in love with the country immediately.
The atmosphere during the event was very personal and friendly which helped participants feel comfortable expressing their opinions and sharing their stories. The Student Association also prepared some light food and drinks for participants to enjoy together. One of the local students noticed that such events help people from both sides to look at their own country through the eyes of foreigners.We are looking forward to the future events organized by the College of Managements and future Students Association team!
【Event】The International Lounge: Healthy Rivalry with Healthy Food!
June 2nd, 2020 from 12:15-13:30PM, the International Programs Students Association held the “International Lounge” activity. Besides the fact that this event is organized to celebrate the end of a semester and classes with students, also, new candidates for the next Students Association (S.A.) were introduced. President and 2 Vice-Presidents will work innovatively and creatively as a team topositively promote mainly the IBMBA/GHRM MBA Program (in Taiwan, globally and online); aiming to build a brand image, internationalization and attract prospective students wishing to study in College of Management, National Sun Yat-sen University.
Zhanna Samodurova, current President of S.A. started the event with an open speech. First of all, she thanked all students for supporting S.A. during the whole semester. Despite the fact that the spring term was affected by COVID-19 and did not have a large number of events announced by the Students Association at the beginning, students still had chance to participate in such kind of activities as “Love Nature” video contest, “Culture Shock in Taiwan” event, and online guest speaker lecture dedicated “to be a well prepared fresh graduate”.
Later the first Team with Hkawn San as President and Le Ngoc Bich Thuy and Jonathan Wang as Vice Presidents respectively presented their team members and their vision of the next Students Association. Joy’s team mentioned that next semester will be very intense and they have many ideas on how to make interaction with students and promotion of International Programs even more successful. Team 1 plans to encourage student – to – student interaction through social activities such as games and team building, parties and cultural activities. Moreover, the team intends to promote international programs through students’ creative art activities. The team also mentioned that launching sustainability related activities is on their top agenda. Furthermore, Team 1 plans to serve their fellow students through career development related programs.
The second team was represented by Elon Bar-Lev as a President and Sabina Ou with Charles Morton in the position of Vice Presidents. Despite the fact that currently Sabina Ou is in the UK, the team managed to record the video of her and show the message to students. The second team told students about the perspective of the next S.A. and emphasized that career events are related to that topic events are very important for the students and as potential leaders of S.A. they will try their best to look in that direction.
At the end of the “International Lounge” students could enjoy light food and drinks. These types of events help our IBMBA & GHRM MBA students be always in the center of the news and take an active part in the meaningful life of the university. Meanwhile, the upcoming 6th Students Association Elections for International Program will take place on 9th of June, 2020. We cannot wait to see the result and wish all our candidates good luck!
【Lecture】Sustainability of Global Enterprise: Embrace the change to survive
On 21st May, IBMBA course Sustainability of Global Enterprise instructor Dr. Ryan Brading invited Ms. Kerry Chang, General Manager of ‘Green Hotel’ in Taichung City, to share with us her experience in running an environmentally focused hotel.
This lecture was part of the courses Dr. Brading teaches, which are: ‘Organizational Politics’, ‘Sustainability of Global Enterprise’ and ‘Business Ethics and Social Responsibility’.
Green Hotel is part of the Green Hotel Group, which consists of two hotels: one in Taichung’s West District, and the other is next to the Taichung’s Fengjia Night Market. It also has its coffee store – Cherry Espresso.
Ms. Chang completed a degree in Management Studies at University of Leeds in the United Kingdom, as well as an MBA at Royal Holloway, University of London. Ms. Chang introduced herself by emphasizing that at a very early age she went abroad for the first time. This part of her life was crucial as it helped Ms. Chang to learn how to be independent (Kerry was only 15 years old when she went for the first time to the UK). As Ms. Chang stated: “Being independent in an oriental society is not easy”.
Kerry has a rich curriculum. Before working at Green Hotel, she worked as a HR supervisor and Area Manager at B&Q, Vice President of a trading company, and a Project Manager at BMW. She has applied for a job once. That was her first job! Kerry stressed that “you have to do your job right, and then, opportunities will come to you!”.
Green Hotel was and still is a great project for Kerry. From scratch, she had to establish a hotel by herself. Her previous experiences helped her a lot. For example, her trading experience helped her in knowing how to import materials for the hotel.
Currently, there is a trend for designed/styled and backpacker hotels. These hotels usually are small or medium sized with less than 100 rooms. Good value and quality are great factors in this industry. Green Hotel belongs to the Top 10 Best Value Hotels in Taiwan!
“Love Earth” is the core value of Green Hotel. Nature, Warm Hospitality, Care for Locals and Creativity are very important to them. Green Hotel is No.1 Low Carbon Hotel in Taichung. Their Hotels use natural and LED lightning to save energy, they recycle raining water, no plastic water bottles, and AC is not used in common areas.
The hotel industry is very competitive. Kerry emphasized that it is vital to be positive and appreciate the strength of others in order to learn more. It is also very important to think in a different way and be creative. One example is her marketing strategy for the hotel. She didn’t use social media only. Kerry has invited TV stations to make programs in the hotel. In this way, the hotel gained recognition without additional marketing budget.
“You have to find your specialties” “change is indefinite” “embrace the challenges”
The lecture ended by asking students in groups to think and present a marketing strategy that will encourage customers to stay at Green Hotel when the Coronavirus pandemic ends. We all learned a lot from Kerry’s experience! （Reported by Lucas Lanski）
【Interview】IBMBA Alumni Todd Lajeunesse(Class of 2013)
“I am applying the knowledge and experience that I gained at NSYSU every day in my business life. First and foremost, the nature of my job means that I am engaging with business owners from around the globe- and just like class, everyone approaches those interactions differently from a cultural perspective”, said Todd Lajeunesse, our alumni from IBMBA.
1.Hi Todd. Could you briefly introduce yourself?
Hello, my name is Todd. I was a student of the IBMBA program and graduated in 2013. I am from Vancouver, Canada. Before taking the IBMBA program, I was graduated from the University of British Columbia in 2004 with a major in Statistics and concentration in Economics.
2.When and why did you decide to join the IBMBA program?
I worked for four years in Seattle, USA, as an Actuarial Analyst. Being an actuary is an excellent career path, but it did not offer the creativity and impact I was seeking. It was after leaving Seattle that I found myself on a plane to Taiwan.I found out about the IBMBA Program at NSYSU while I was visiting a friend in Taiwan. To me, taking this program is not only an excellent way to pursue advanced education but also an awesome opportunity to extend my travels.
3.How did you feel about your career opportunities after obtaining the NSYSU Diploma?
Excellent. I felt that my experience attaining my MBA in Taiwan, with an international group of classmates, put me at unique advantages that I would not have had otherwise.
One of the critical advantages of IBMBA is that it enhances your theoretical and practical knowledge of how companies operate. Having a compliment of "soft skills," such as communication, teamwork, and leadership, is a crucial component of business success or any endeavor in that respect. Today's labor market is more turbulent than ever before and fills many with uncertainty and fears of being left out. A more marketable skillset and greater job security are amongst the many benefits of taking this program.
Moreover, a strong network of professionals is also an asset you can have in NSYSU. This type of network allows you to gain access to new employment opportunities and can be useful if you decide to set up your own business.
I am applying the knowledge and experience that I gained at NSYSU every day in my business life. First and foremost, the nature of my job means that I am engaging with business owners from around the globe- and just like class, everyone approaches those interactions differently from a cultural perspective. In the Financial Management course with Professor Yih Jeng, I was responsible for auditing financial statements of businesses we would like to buy, to determine the valuation. We will also eventually be looking at expanding the markets are solutions are sold in and intend to tap my NSYSU network for new team members who can help us enter them.
4.Could you share with us some of your working experience after your graduation at NSYSU?
I am the Chief Investment Officer for Univerus- a Vancouver-based software company focused on building and acquiring solutions for the Utility, Local Government, and Construction Industries. Since we founded the company in July '19, we have acquired seven software companies located in New Zealand, Australia, the US, and Canada. We are working to integrate their best of breed solutions into a single interface with multiple product offerings.
The first "job" I tried to land was the one that I was trying to create for myself- I wanted to pursue entrepreneurship. I had built my graduate thesis around a business concept in the sharing economy that I hoped would allow people to buy home-cooked meals from their neighbors. Some partners and I built the website, launched it at a large food festival, gained a fair amount of media attention, but then got hit with the reality that local health authorities in Canada frown upon people selling food from their home. With not enough traction to justify fighting government regulations, and running out of savings, I chalked it up to a great learning experience and decided to find a job that paid a salary.
5.What are the difficulties you faced when started the studies? What/who helped you to overcome these difficulties?
Chinese Class! I wanted to learn as much as possible but quickly realized the limitations of my language learning ability. I was a long way from discussing anything of substance in a second language, so I set the bar at learning some getting around town. My Chinese teacher at the Chinese Language Center also helped me improve my Chinese vocabulary and grammar.
6.Do you have any recommendations or advice for current students?
Figure out what your dream job is, and then go about building the qualifications and experience required to get it. The jobs you work need to provide more than a paycheck- if it is not getting you a step closer to your goals, it's time to move onto one that does.
Respondent: Todd Lajeunesse (NSYSU, IBMBA Alumni, Class of 2013) Interviewer: Dang Phuong Thao (Alex), Vice President of the 5th Students Association.
【Interview】IBMBA Alumni Anna Kiseleva(Class of 2015)
Anna Kiseleva Originally from Russia Lives and works in Taiwan IBMBA Alumni Class of 2015 NSYSU, Taiwan
As part of the Leading Global Academia in Taiwan, the International Business MBA and Global HRM MBA programs at NSYSU are committed to provide a diverse and inclusive learning environment for our local and international students. Our alumnus Anna Kiseleva came from Russia to Taiwan to study in the IBMBA program. Zhanna Samodurova, President of the Students Association, conducted an interview with Anna and asked her a few questions about her experience.
“Besides gaining professional knowledge, international experience, internship and current job, my husband and I met in the IBMBA program, and I can say that this was one of the most unforgettable memories and life-changing events happened to me at NSYSU. Also making new international friends is a great experience and business connections for the rest of my life” said Anna Kiseleva, our alumni from IBMBA.
-Anna, we know you attended the IBMBA program from 2013-2015. Why did you choose Taiwan for studying?
The field of my studies was International Economics where we had to study two foreign languages and travel abroad for language exchange. I started learning Chinese and went to China, and then I travelled to the United States where I saw Taipei Economic and Cultural Office. That was the sign. Later I was curious about Taipei, and how it is different from mainland China. I came back to Russia to finish my master degree and saw a Chinese language cram school that offered help applying to Taiwan universities. I spent one year learning traditional characters in that cram school and preparing for the next move. That’s basically how I choose Taiwan.
-What do you like about the country Taiwan?
I like three things about Taiwan - the convenience, the infrastructure and the people. The people in Taiwan generally are very polite and friendly which makes it easier for communication and interactions. Taiwan is convenient for a living, too. Everywhere you go you can find a 24-hour convenience store such as 7/11 or Family Mart where you can buy a snack, a cup of coffee, withdraw money from the ATM or even send a parcel and pay the electricity bills. I like how efficient and clear Taiwan government works, this is a matter of minutes to get a document or receive professional services. Taiwan is truly a Formosa island. The only thing that is hard to bear is its humid and hot climate, but there is air conditioning everywhere, so it is manageable to survive hot summer days.
-Why did you choose the IBMBA Program at NSYSU?
I choose IBMBA program as a continuous next stage of my education which is closely related to my first master degree in Russia – International Economics. I decided right after the graduation in 2013.
-Who was your favorite professor during your studying at NSYSU, why?
I think every professor contributed to my professional growth, some gave me opportunities, while others guide me throughout research. I want to show my special gratitude to professor Bih-shiaw Jaw who was my thesis advisor that gave me freedom to choose a topic, conduct a research and made my own choices.
-What was your favorite course during your entire program, why?
Seminar in Business Management - the course where I learned more practical skills and gained business knowledge from successful business professionals in Taiwan. It was a good chance to meet practitioners from industries and learn how to apply theoretical knowledge in real business world.
-Let’s talk about your work experience. Did you have any internship while studying?
I seized an opportunity offered by IBMBA program to have an internship while studying. I was an intern in R&D Department at Taiwan Fu Hsing Industrial Co., Ltd. My job tasks included market research and product marketing. During the time of internship, I learned a lot about Taiwanese business culture, lifestyle and internal hierarchy. It gave me a broad idea of how to succeed in the culture that is very different from what I get used to.
-Could you please tell us about your current position?
After graduation I moved to Taipei looking for opportunities in high-tech companies. Luckily, I was invited to join Winmate Inc., a rugged computing and embedded solutions provider for industries operating in some of the most challenging environments. It has been 5 years since I joined Product & Marketing Dept. as a Product Marketing Manager.
-Was it hard for you to find a job after graduation?
I found my job at 104 – a famous online portal Taiwan. For me it was not difficult mainly because of my Chinese language skills. Back in the time I was fluent in reading, writing and speaking. In Taiwan you still have to speak Chinese to feel comfortable no matter in business or everyday life.
-Did you feel that Degree from NSYSU helped you while job-hunting period?
Yes, the MBA program of NSYSU is one of the top-ranked in Taiwan and IBMBA program has AACSB accreditation. The HR usually checks the university first before moving forward to personal information and professional background. Master degree at NSYSU opens up many employment opportunities in Taiwan.
-What is a moment that you never will forget about your life at NSYSU?
Besides gaining professional knowledge, international experience, and internship, my husband and I met in the IBMBA program, and I can say that this was one of the most unforgettable memories and life-changing events happened to me at NSYSU. Also making new international friends is a great experience and business connections for the rest of my life.
-Would you recommend this program to your friends or future Master students?
Definitely, I believe that this is a good chance to foster your international cooperation skills, expand your knowledge of Asian culture and gain business knowledge and expertise from local perspective.
Respondent: Anna Kiseleva (NSYSU, IBMBA Alumni, Class of 2015) Interviewer: Zhanna Samodurova (President of Students Association, 2020) Date: 15/06/2020
【Honor】 Students Bagged Awards at the Si Wan College’s Life Imitation Art Challenge
GHRM MBA students Hkawn San (Joy) from Myanmar and Lê Ngọc Bích Thủy (Sam) from Vietnam bagged awards at the recently concluded Si Wan College’s Life Imitation Art Challenge. The competition aims to bring out the creativity of the students by cosplaying a classic work of art. Winners were chosen based on how close they imitate the art, and by their element of creativity!
Joy on Choosing and Doing her Art
Joy bagged the third place by imitating the classic art “Me and My Parrots”, a self-portrait of the Mexican artist Frida Kahlo. Joy told us that she wanted to join the competition the moment she saw the poster, but she didn’t have the motivation of doing it. Until her friend, Sam who’s also one of the winners, convinced her to join the competition.
We asked Joy on how she put on her creativity hat and she told us that having fun is important in the process. She wanted to share this fun spirit by creating the art in a creative and fun way using limited resources. Joy used several materials at her dormitory to serve as the “parrots” for her art. After having some struggles on taking the picture, Joy was able to make the award-winning picture! Also worth mentioning, Sam also helped her in taking the photo and post-processing.
Sam on Choosing and Doing her Art
Sam bagged the Committee’s Choice Award by imitating the small oil-on-oak panel painting “Portrait of a Young Girl”, by the Early Netherlandish painter Petrus Christus. On choosing the art to imitate, Sam believes that she had enough resources to imitate the art and she also believes that she can imitate it as well in a fun way. If you’re curious how she did the art, she first prepared the coat (what she is wearing), the tissue paper, and a rice cooker. Yup, she used a rice cooker to imitate the hair of the young woman in the portrait and used a cloth to support it. After the preparation, she took a selfie and also did the post-processing of the photo by herself!
Joy on Choosing NSYSU and GHRM MBA
She wanted to study in a Chinese-speaking country, since she already studied the language before. Joy wanted to enhance and improve her Chinese. Also, she was working in an international organization before as an HR professional. With that, she also wanted to enhance her professional knowledge in the HR field. Her seniors in Myanmar and the “friendliness to foreigners of Taiwanese people” also made her even more convinced in pursuing a higher degree in Taiwan.
Joy is also impressed on how responsive the coordinators of the program. As an inquisitive person, Joy wanted to make sure of all things before investing her time and effort in doing a master’s degree in a foreign country. She mentioned that the coordinators respond to her inquiries very efficiently. “For every specific question that I ask, I always get the answers I need that satisfies my curiosity” This made her feel comfortable with the university before coming to Taiwan, since she felt a “supportive school community” already.
Having the reasons of wanting to study in a Chinese-speaking country and HRM and feeling the support system that she needs; Joy saw that the GHRM MBA Program of NSYSU is the “perfect fit” for all the criteria she set in pursuing a higher degree. She even told us that she did the right choice! With this opportunity of taking GHRM MBA in NSYSU, she was able to have more opportunities such as having a government scholarship, attending a business school in the Netherlands, and a lot more!
Sam on Choosing NSYSU and GHRM MBA
Sam had always wanted to go abroad to study because she feels exhausted at her job and wanted to do something new. She had five years working as a training coordinator and teaching assistant in a solutions company focusing on soft skills. Her experience in working with numerous companies and her trainer influenced her on having the interest of taking an HR course to study. Also, having the interest in learning how to train people well and how they behave made Sam decide to pursue a master’s degree that focuses on HR and behavior.
According to Sam, she used Facebook as a tool to help her find the university that would fit her interest and searched the top universities in Taiwan offering an HR degree which is taught in English. The environment where the school is situated narrowed her choices even more. Fascinated with the sceneries and reputation NSYSU has, Sam decided to select NSYSU as her choice of pursuing a master’s degree. Sam also found the process of applying for the program easy and simple, so she didn’t find any difficulties prior to studying.
Having a lesser confidence in speaking in the English language made her quite passive in class recitations. But when she met a lot of friendly people in the campus and had the courage to join the dragon boat team, she was able to get through that difficulty. Sam also mentioned that the staff are very helpful in answering her inquiries. She is also happy about the professors that made her appreciate the program even more. She also told us that she would definitely recommend the “awesome” program to others!
Again, congratulations to Joy and Sam! Continue to be creative and uphold “fun” in everything that you do!