What Does the Future Hold? Part 1

The future has been on my mind a lot recently, specifically post-graduation and my fiancée.

All thought of staying in the UK seems to have vanished, particularly as my fiancées mother is keen for us to move to China. While my fiancée would, I hope, have few issues getting readjusted to living in her home country, the question on both of our minds is how would I adjust?

My first, and foremost, thoughts are to adjust my plans that I originally laid out before getting engaged and adapt them to China:

  • To continue my studies to postgraduate level,
  • Failing the above, to find suitable employment,

Two simple choices, without speaking the Mandarin finding employment will be difficult (although I suppose that I could always teach English, TEFL?)

Looking at postgraduate courses four criteria arise:

  1. Location – Preferably Shanghai due to fiancés family,
  2. Course – Business related would be nice,
  3. Taught Language – Taught in English preferred, which does limit the number of courses,
  4. Costs – Specially how would I pay the course costs and cover my living costs,

Ignoring costs for the moment (more on that later) my research is narrowed down to the parameters:

  • A Shanghai based university,
  • Taught in English,
  • Business related (including Finance and Economics),

Looking at universities, between Google and my Fiancé, I’ve narrowed my choices to:

  • Fudan University,
  • Shanghai University,
  • Shanghai University of International Business and Economics,
  • Shanghai Jiao Tong University,

In terms of course availability in English, looking at the English language sites for the universities some are clearer about what they offer than others, although this looks like pure translation issue and in one case the website not loading the applications page!

Looking at the courses by university that are taught in English:

Fudan University

The School of Economics for English-taught MA’s (EMA) offers two tracks:

  1. Chinese Economy,
  2. Finance,

Shanghai Univeristy

The School of Economics offers six postgraduate courses:

Academic masters:

  • Theoretical Economics,
  • Applied Economics,
  • Statistics,

Professional Master Programs:

  • International Business,
  • Finance,
  • Finance MBA,

There is also a School of Management however at present I’m unable to determine which courses they offer.

Shanghai University was, out of the four, the most difficult one to research both because I was unable to determine which courses are taught in English but also because when attempting to connect to the admissions page, among others, the page wouldn’t connect. There was also no response to emails.

Shanghai University of International Business and Economics

For postgraduate courses four appear to be available:

  1. International Trade,
  2. International Finance,
  3. International Law,
  4. International Corporation Management,

Shanghai Jiao Tong University

The Antai College of Economics & Management offers a Master of International Business while the Shanghai Advanced Institute of Finance offers a Master of Finance, both also offer MBA course (International for the former college).

Applications

Applications appear to open for all four universities in late November/early December and close around April. Guidelines for the next academic year admissions will be released when the admissions period begins.

Costs

Costs are an element that I’m continuing to research, looking at scholarships, grants and bursaries. Look out for part 2 where I’ll go over what I’ve discovered so far.

Feeling Ugh and Drained of Energy

It’s now six weeks into the semester and already I have started to think ‘why stay at university?’ Feelings of inadequacy in what I’m doing, both work and uni, the sense of loss and even feeling left behind when it comes to what I would normally do before I started university.

The last two years have on one hand flown by, the teaching semesters coming to an end just after they’ve started and deadlines coming up faster than it feels possible. On the other hand however it feels like I’ve stood still or gone backwards. University has been, and will continue to be, a large commitment in not only time but also energy. Physically and mentally.

Lately this has not only left me feeling drained, but has started to effect my memory. Whole days just seem to disappear and I don’t remember a thing from them.

This comes from, I suspect, a combination of various factors:

  • Freshers flu, ugh sickness going around.This year seems particularly bad as I’ve been ill more than once within the last couple of months. 
  • Money, that lack of feeling of having a regular disposable income instead where currently each months pay-check covers only living costs. 
  • The move from a working environment to an academic one (this can be a big one, it took me the entire first semester of my first year to adjust). 
  • Dealing with many new people (I’m not naturally a social person, as I’m sure many can contest to). 
  • Making too many commitments and over-stretching myself, president of two societies, course rep, and a number of other commitments have led me to expending energy that could otherwise be put towards my studies. 
  • The lack of certainty around my fiancé’s visa is causing me a lot of concern, particularly as by the time we’ll know more on if we can stay in the UK or not will be end of April at the earlier. This affects applications for scholarships/grants as I don’t want to commit to accepting a place at university within the UK without that certainty of knowing first.  

Not forgetting of course the module assessments and my major project. The module assessments I’m not too nervous about, the major project has me nervous enough that I’ve even thought of dropping out of uni!

We’re also coming up to the winter months, and as usual my mood is starting to fall. This year I really should invest in one of those special lamps for SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder).

Good news is, I know that I’m not alone. Bad news is, I tend not to discuss my problems…