Each week, we ask one of our new fun-loving exchange students to share a little about themselves and the most revealing question of all, what’s in your backpack?
This week, Jian Yuan, from Shanghai, China, gives us a peek into his Thunderbird Backpack.
Where do you call home?
My home country is China. Despite living in Shanghai, for a better career in the automotive industry, I still consider myself a residence of Hangzhou. This beautiful city is located on the Hangzhou Bay 110 mi southwest of Shanghai. It was the capital of China 1000 years ago during Song Dynasty. Something you might already know, but originally from Hangzhou is the West Lake, long Jing green tea and Chinese silk. The feeling of Hangzhou is unique among those ancient Chinese cities such as Beijing, Xi-an and Chengdu. If you plan to visit China in the future, Hangzhou will be a place of interest that you should see.
What school are you on exchange with and how long will you be at Thunderbird?
I am currently a second year MBA student of Fudan University. Fudan was my dream school since I was a kid, because it is one of the best. In the field of business administration, Fudan’s MBA program was ranked 83 in FT 2014 global MBA ranking where only a few Chinese business schools are even listed. My Thunderbird journey will end in May. As a Chinese postgraduate student, I need to work on my master degree thesis during the last semester. After the thesis defense, I will graduate in Feb.2015.
What is your favorite part of Thunderbird so far?
My Thunderbird experience is wonderful. There are two parts that I like the most: the unique international student body and the professors. For me, half of MBA study is what you can learn from your classmates and to learn how to cooperate with others who are unlike yourself. I feel so lucky to have so many good friends and teammates here. Since I am an exchange student, I am able to compare the differences between a top Chinese business school and a top US business school. The way Thunderbird professors teach has greatly broadened my horizon.
What are you hoping to do when you leave Thunderbird and graduate?
Shanghai is a city full of opportunities. I probably will stay in Shanghai after graduation from Fudan. As one of the key takeaways from Thunderbird: one should always strengthen his strengths, instead of wasting time on improving his weaknesses. I think one of the best opportunities for a Chinese MBA graduate should be to actively participate and to play an important role in the process of rapid economic development of China.
What are the three most interesting things in your backpack?
Well, in my backpack, the three most interesting things: a children safety seat, a Chinese kitchen tool for making noodles and a camera. I came to the US with my wife, Vivian Zhang and my daughter, Amber Yuan. During the winter break and weekends, we traveled a lot, and those three things were always in my backpack.