【International Alumni】Precious Taiwan Life with Degree, Future Career Path, and Beautiful Family Together

Matthew Hopkins, from Washington, USA, received his master degree in Global Human Resource Management (known as GHRM MBA) from National Sun Yat-sen University. Matthew came to Taiwan in 2013, and since then not only has he developed a fluent Chinese skill, he has also built a precious life on this island with a degree, an enviable future career path, and a beautiful family to cherish together. Before returning to the states, Matthew used to work for a technology company and ZMI Electronics in Kaohsiung City and the concrete experiences has led him to the present job working as a Clinical Specialist: Deep Brain Stimulation at Boston Scientific in the USA.

Influence from GHRM MBA                                                                                          Matthew graduated from the Art Department of Evergreen State College in 2011, and after graduation, he went on a road trip domestically. In 2013, Matthew decided to come to Taiwan for a couple of years, and his original plan was to teach English while visiting this exotic place. However, life has its own plan; coincidentally, Matthew learned about GHRM MBA program offered in NSYSU, and after finding out more about the program from a school staff, he decided to enroll and complete his graduate degree right here in Taiwan.

Instead of restricting his career to HR, Matthew would rather like to consider HR major would prepare the future career as a leader and manager that can be applied to the work organization. Of all the lessons taken through his schooling life in NSYSU, Seminar in Business Management was one of Matthew’s favorite classes. Several industrial exports were invited to give lectures or share experiences during the class; each provided his/her perspective toward the field, and also pointed out cultural differences that students may encounter. The professor also assigned different challenges for students to solve in groups or by themselves to inspire them; Matthew found himself basked in knowledge and encouragement from each lesson. In addition, Matthew realized that there was still lots of room for him to improve his Chinese capability from the courses he had taken; fortunately, one of the very useful resources NSYSU offers, which is Chinese classes that take place twice a week, became very helpful as Matthew could emphasize on sessions he wanted to improve precisely. “A degree does not get you a career, but it opens the opportunities for you; being familiar with Taiwanese business culture definitely is a big plus when applying a job.” Speaking from his own experience as a graduate student from GHRM MBA.

Profound experience living in Taiwan
Living in Taiwan for 9 years, Matthew adores Taiwanese cuisine and its food culture the most. He discovered Taiwanese people are passionate and down-to-earth when it comes to food; from street food to the stared restaurant, Matthew admires the way Taiwanese people cherish the essence of food; as simple as tasty or not, to the locals, food is expected to be treated with respect, not wasted. Despite of the road safety, he appreciates sense of security and the National Health Insurance System in Taiwan, those are some of the key reasons that made Matthew values and praises Taiwan so highly.

Having 3 years working experience in Taiwan, Matthew has also encountered several cultural differences, but he always handles it with a positive attitude. He believes that cultural differences are not to be “overcome”, but to be “negotiated”. According to Matthew, reasonable and respectful communication among colleagues can help to bridge the gap effectively, particularly if the company values and trusts your existence.

Words for the graduates
“Make sure to continue achieving personal accomplishment and academic growth in this challenging yet supportive environment.” With this statement, Matthew summarizes and shares his life philosophy to the future graduates; based on the well-organized curriculum, diversified academic and practical environment he had experienced personally, Matthew strongly recommends foreign students to consider Taiwan as the destination for further studies.