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PHBS Student Profile Chelsea Chen

Time:2018-01-15 16:02:08  Hits:[]
We decided to meet on the second floor of PHBS by the tables near the student association, a coveted place among students for quick group meetings or long study sessions on their own.
 
I waited for her for a few minutes and at last I saw her approaching from down the aisle. I decided to interview Chelsea Chen (陈雅慧), as she’s one of the most involved and outgoing first year domestic students.

 
 Chelsea Chen (陈雅慧)
 
Chelsea grew up in Changchun (长春, Chángchūn), the capital city of Jilin province in the northeastern part of China. Although winter in Changchun lasts for half a year with temperatures below zero, Chelsea says she misses home. A flight from Shenzhen to her hometown is about five hours, and by train it could take one day.
 
When I asked her what are Northern Chinese like she responded with a broad smile, and then placed her arms on the table. “We are very warm people, hospitable, and extroverts,” she said, then paused and seemed to be dwelling on whether to say or keep for herself her next thoughts. She then gave me a bashful look and cocked her head backwards in a giggle. “We like drinking. That’s our culture. We must drink as part of our hospitality, and as a sign of respect and welcome. I don’t like drinking, but as it is part of our culture I do when it is needed to socialize. But here in Southern China, there’s a lot of tea drinking instead!”
 
As an undergraduate from Jilin University in financial management, Chelsea recently took the CFA exam, for which she’s looking forward to a positive result, although she acknowledges that the test was by no means easy.
 
During her time as an undergraduate, Chelsea was president of the student union, where she led many group activities. She reminisces that the choreographed dance for the university’s annual sports meeting was biggest one. She led and organized more than 100 people and held practice sessions several times a day, sometimes as early as 5 a.m.
 
“It was challenging to have to lead that many people, but it was good practice on how to influence others, because you have to negotiate and try to make those that are not very willing to commit to jump on board,” she said.
 
As for her academic goals, Chelsea said, “I had it very clear in my mind that I wanted a top university for my graduate studies, so I had to push myself further and work a lot harder.”
 
On top of making sure she scored high marks in all courses, Chelsea lobbied business people to deliver speeches to students at the university. She also collaborated in a startup – a waimai (food delivery) app for high-scale restaurants which was later sold to Meituan (one of China’s leading food delivery companies).
 
As one of the few students from Jilin University to be recommended to China’s top year she graduated, Chelsea told me how she decided to apply for admission at PHBS’s Master of Management program. “I came here for the summer camp, and PHBS was very welcoming and held a lot of activities. Unlike the other universities that I visited, PHBS was more experimental. We did many group activities, and instead of taking an exam we presented a mock-up thesis to showcase our academic abilities. The professors cared a lot about our performance. I also had a very good synergy with the people that I worked with. And PHBS even took us to a company visit to Tencent!”
 
After graduating, Chelsea hopes to find a job in Beijing’s financial industry as it is close to her hometown and it is the industry she feels will give her the most opportunities.
 
For now, Chelsea hopes to gain as much technical knowledge as possible. She also notes that she feels it important to acquire a deep understanding of the Southern Chinese culture. “China is a very large and vast country,” she says, “and as such, there are many differences within its borders. One famous CEO in China, Wang Shi, once said he wanted to hire people who have lived or studied in both the northern and southern part of China, as they are the most adaptable to change.” It is clear Chelsea sees PHBS as a vehicle to achieve her goals in life.

 By Seimar Solano Nelson
Edited by Priscilla Young




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