I recently had the good fortune to do an exchange program with The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) as part of my experience with the Full-Time MBA programme at Imperial College Business School. I’d been to mainland China previously, but never to Hong Kong, so not only would I be exploring a new business school, but a new city (or semi-autonomous region) at the same time. Despite a bumpy start to the trip (there was a typhoon my first full day in Hong Kong) I had a very memorable experience, met some great people, and ate some delicious food.
While at CUHK, half of my classes were on the main campus located in the New Territories, North of town, and the other half being in their urban campus on Hong Kong Island. Due to this I decided to stay halfway in between at an Airbnb in Hung Hom with a beautiful view from my window of Hong Kong Island. Hong Kong Island is a world unto itself of towering buildings, roads with multiple levels and above ground walkways, all geared towards getting the most out of the least space possible.
Hong Kong is not only a very modern city but also a city of many contradictions. You will find beautiful parks, temples and monasteries next to towering buildings and busy roads. Meanwhile there are leftover aspects of British influence in the form of English language signs, double decker buses, and cars driving on the left side of the road. This is intermixed with impressive Chinese and Hong Kong institutions such as Hutchinson Whampoa and HSBC and street food with a definitive Southern Chinese flair.
I found my courses at CUHK to be quite interesting, especially my course on International Business: Doing Business in China, which was a major factor towards me choosing CUHK as a study abroad location. As the economies of China and S.E. Asia continue to grow at a stupendous rate having a more in depth understanding of Asian business culture, regulations, and differences in general is going to be advantageous. To that end I am very thankful for the opportunity to spend some time in Hong Kong learning and immersing myself in the culture.
Vince is a student in our 2016-17 Full-Time MBA class.