Across China: Students from B&R countries prefer science, engineering majors

Source: Xinhua| 2018-09-17 20:32:34|Editor: ZX
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LANZHOU, Sept. 17 (Xinhua) -- Alimo Philip Kofi has been busy collecting data on logistics firms in his home country of Ghana recently.

Kofi, a logistics management major at Lanzhou Jiaotong University in northwest China's Gansu Province, plans to open a logistics firm in Ghana after his graduation in 2020.

China is an Internet powerhouse with well-developed e-commerce and express delivery industries, while Ghana is not good in these fields, said Kofi, who received a Chinese government scholarship for postgraduate study at Lanzhou Jiaotong University in 2016. "This is the most important reason why I came to learn in China."

The online shopping experience on a smartphone in China excites Kofi. "I can buy whatever I want online and receive the goods within days," he said.

Kofi said China's flourishing logistics industry is changing people's lives and he hopes to use the successful business model in Ghana.

"There is no business that is without risk. I believe that with determination and a good business model, there will be success," he said, adding that the experience and knowledge he learned in China could boost his chance of success.

Twizerane Jean D'amour from Rwanda, a postgraduate of mechanical engineering at Lanzhou Jiaotong University, said China's rapid development in mechanical engineering attracted worldwide attention.

"Technology will change the future. I am studying robotics technology, and I hope it could bring positive changes to my compatriots," he said.

As China pushes forward the Belt and Road Initiative, more and more international students are seeking higher education in China, said Zhang Guojin, head of International Education School at Lanzhou Jiaotong University.

"In 2008, our school only had 60 international students from over 10 countries. We have seen rapid growth since 2013 and now have more than 500 overseas students from 51 countries for the fall semester this year," said Zhang.

A total of 317,200 students from Belt and Road countries studied in China in 2017, accounting for 64.9 percent of all international students in China, representing an annual increase of 11.6 percent, according to the Chinese Ministry of Education.

With the economic and social development in recent years, more international students are choosing science and engineering majors, including logistics management, mechanics engineering and artificial intelligence, a departure from liberal arts majors in the early years.

The Belt and Road Initiative offers many international students opportunities to enjoy China's new economy and technological progress, said Zhang.

Meanwhile, China is offering more scholarships to international students. In 2017, 58,600 students from abroad studied in China with scholarships, which is about 12 percent of all international students.

"All the measures help international students share the dividends of China's development," said Zhang.

International students can enjoy opportunities in China after graduation. To attract more foreign talent, China has streamlined the paperwork needed to secure foreigners a work visa starting in April 2017.

"It'd be wonderful if I could stay and work in China after graduation," said D'amour.