In the afternoon of October 30, 2007, the Education Section of the Chinese Embassy in the UK held a reception, jointly with Barkers Global Ltd, to promote probation and employment for Overseas Chinese Students in UK. Minister Counsellor Wang Yongda of the Education Section, Mr. Jeremy Gordon, Honorary Secretary-general of 48 Group Club, and Mr. Robert Bain, Chairman of Barkers Global Ltd delivered speeches. Representatives from more than 20 famous multinationals and emerging enterprises, such as 48 Group Club, Shell, Charters and Swiss Bank and representatives of overseas Chinese students in UK attended thereception. Ms. Dong Zheng of Barkers Global Ltd presided over the reception.
Minister Counsellor Wang Yongda delivered a speech . He pointed out that UK was one of the countries with the largest number of overseas Chinese students. There are more than 100,000 Chinese students and scholars studying or working in UK. In recent years, more than 20,000 Chinese students came to UK every year and more than 15,000 overseas Chinese students return to China. These students play a very important role in the overall development and cooperation in all fields in the two countries. He also pointed out that UK universities welcome international students, including those from China, but Chinese students shall make their decisions on whether to study in UK based on several factors, for example, whether they can learn useful knowledge, whether the tuition is reasonable. A very important factor is whether they can get the probation and employment opportunities in UK after they finish their study and whether their competition in the employment market can be strengthened. The Education Section of the Chinese Embassy in the UK pays close attention to the employment of overseas Chinese students, that is why it promotes bilateral cooperation in this field. Minister Counsellor Wang Yongda also noted that the "3rd meeting of Sino-UK Education Ministers" would be held in Beijing a few days later and the probation program of overseas Chinese students in UK would be an important issue for discussion in the meeting.
Minister Counsellor Wang Yongda pointed out that Chinese students retain the traditional virtues of Chinese people, they are diligent, hard-working, fond of learning and eager to make progress. He hoped that more Chinese students could get employment and probation opportunities in UK after they finished their study, so as to have a better command of knowledge and management experiences and get more familiar with international practices. He believed that these overseas students would make contribution in the future to promoting Sino-UK exchanges in education, science and technology, business and trade, promoting technological innovations in China, promoting China to get integrated with the world in social, economic, science and technology and actively adapt to the rapid development of the globalization.
In his speech, Mr. Jeremy Gordon, Honorary Secretary-general of 48 Group Club made a brief introduction to the history of the trade cooperation between 48 Group Club and China. 48 Group Club broke the ice for trade cooperation with China with the strong cooperative spirit upon its founding. Since the first "ice-breakers" made great contributions to Sino-UK trade cooperation in the 1950s, the "ice-breakers" of the next generation have carried forward the traditions and have been making sustained efforts. Unlike their predecessors, the new promoters of 48 Group Club pay more attention to the cooperation with China in the education sector. The participation of 48 Group Club in this cooperation between the Chinese government and the business circle of UK is just consistent with the spirit of 48 Group Club. He also noted that the Chinese students in UK is a powerful human resource and this cooperation is of help for the UK companies to find and recruit more and better talents. At last, he welcomed excellent Chinese students to work with 48 Group Club.
Mr. Robert Bain, Chairman of Barkers Global Ltd delivered a speech finally. He said that he had a deep impression in the process of probation program for the Chinese students in last six months (note: Global Education Group plc and Barkers Group Limited jointly established Barkers Global Ltd in March 2007). He noted: a large number of Chinese students come to study in top UK universities and they hope to get probation and employment opportunities in the enterprises of the western countries; while many UK and multinationals are also looking for qualified and excellent international graduates. He pointed out that on the one hand, Barkers Global Ltd has a good understanding of the conditions of these Chinese students and has abundant experiences; on the other hand, it has a correct understanding of the models, standards and requirements for the recruitment of all companies. He suggested that Chinese students submit their CVs to the talent database of Barkers Global Ltd online and Barkers Global Ltd would match these CVs with the recruitment information of the companies and enterprises so as to find more employment opportunities for the Chinese students. He also said that only the effective cooperation could ensure that Chinese students are interested to study in UK, get probation opportunities and return to China with greater competition.
Through this reception, participants from the UK companies had a deeper understanding of the innovative cooperation between the Education Section of the Chinese Embassy in the UK and the business circle of UK. The interest of the UK enterprises to overseas Chinese students was aroused and their confidence to offer employment and probation opportunities to Chinese graduates was strengthened. The participating Chinese students also actively involved in the exchanges with the representatives of the UK companies. Xinhua News Agency, People's Daily, Phoenix TV and Sing Tao Daily covered the meeting.
The Education Section of the Chinese Embassy in the UK signed the Memorandum of Cooperation on Probation Program for Overseas Chinese Students in UK with Global Education Group plc in March 2006. According to the Memorandum, the self-funded overseas Chinese students registered at the Education Section can apply to Global Education Group plc for probation from 3 to 12 months in UK. More than 100 Chinese students have find probation opportunities up to now through this program.