About China

There are few countries in the world today that are more complicated, more fascinating, or more important than China. Indeed, as its influence in world affairs grows by the year, and as its political system remains in as great a state of flux as it ever has, students would be very well advised to consider studying there for college. There is nothing at all to lose from spending four years in China-the language skills that will be acquired, the cultural sensitivities that will be gained, and the understanding of the culture of the country itself and the region as a whole will be drastically important in the coming years as this so-called sleeping giant continues to awaken and influence the world of the 21st century to an ever increasing extent.

The country itself is a fascinating amalgam of ancient culture and modern technology, of rigid governmental control and freewheeling development and manufacturing. It is impossible to pin down China, and attempting to define it in one specific way or another is an effort in futility. Indeed, if one is to begin to understand China, one must make peace with the fact that there are certain paradoxes that cannot be overcome.

Because of the vast size of China, there are many regions in which you may choose to study. From the smaller cities to urban meccas like Beijing and Shanghai, students may have an infinite number and variety of experiences there. Most, however, do choose to study in the bigger cities, simply because they are easier to get to, more conducive to academic experience, and more receptive of foreign students. It is important, however, to research each of them and choose carefully: The cultural differences between them can be vast, and you should make sure that you consider your options carefully and choose wisely.

Many students are scared away from studying in China because of the supposed difficulty of the language. And indeed, it is quite different from English or any of the Romance languages most of us are familiar with. But that doesn't mean you cannot learn it. Though the characters may seem daunting at first, once you get the hang of it, you will likely not struggle nearly as much as you initially expect.

It is possible to discuss China at quite more length. The most important thing to realize is that China is a country whose riches are waiting for you to discover them. Your life will be changed in ways you may never have thought possible if you make the decision to spend your college years in China. The hardest part, in fact, is deciding to go. For once you do, the skills you gain and the experiences you have will make you not only more marketable in the business world, but also a much more interesting person than you ever were before. And that's what college is all about