International experience rewarding for business student

News News & events

28 Feb 2013

Teaching conversational English in -10 degree temperatures in the Czech Republic wasn’t how Bachelor of Applied Management student Linda Duan imagined spending her summer holidays. She was offered the opportunity to spend six weeks teaching in Brno through AIESEC, a youth run non-profit organisation and jumped at the chance with the encouragement of her tutors in the Department of Business.

“The internship was a really interesting and fun experience and I learned a lot about Czech culture and how to work with people who have cultural differences. It was a great opportunity and I can now add new skills to my CV,” Duan says.

Linda Duan

Linda Duan spent her summer teaching English in the Czech Republic, adding international experience to her CV.

The Department of Business actively encourages students to pursue overseas experiences either independently or through the CPIT exchange opportunities offered to students across all degree programmes. Department of Business Academic Manager, Teresa Schwellnus says that exchanges can help students to grow, both in their study area and personally.

“The business world is becoming more multi-cultural and even smaller businesses can be working at an international level. Any experience that creates a better understanding of other cultures adds immensely to a student’s education. Students who have an experience such as this on their CV have a point of difference which most businesses and other employers value,”she says.

Duan was selected to spend four days a week working with Czech University students on their conversational English, which came as a bit of a surprise as Chinese is her first language. It was eye-opening to discover how little they knew about New Zealand and her own Chinese culture and how much she had to learn about the Czech Republic.

“The students asked me questions like ‘can you see Kiwi birds running around everywhere?’ and about what we would normally eat. It turned out that they had a whole different kind of dumpling to a Chinese dumpling. It was more like a big loaf of bread. I taught and learned a lot,” she says.

With this international experience behind her Duan is excited to be starting her final year of study at CPIT and finishing her double major in Project Management and Operations Management. Her experiences have fuelled her interest in the communications aspect of her degree and she plans to pursue a final year internship working on an art or music project in Christchurch.

Find out more about CPIT’s student exchange opportunities.