University School of Social Work,
Master of Science in Social Work;
California State University, Los Angeles, Bachelor of Arts in Social Work
“I have traveled, worked, lived and studied in 35 countries before I went to China and it was never on my list of places to go. I was wrong. China should have been at the top of my list. I wouldn’t have gone unless I had the opportunity to… like a dream job…. working in education with international students. I found the Academic Advisor position on Facebook on a shared Columbia group page. The position looked great, but I wasn’t sure about moving to Chengdu. I didn’t know what to expect. Despite my reservations, I moved to Chengdu and it was the best decision I could have made career wise post grad school and for my cultural competency.
GreatChina welcomed me and I was truly in shock by how welcoming and friendly the staff and locals are on a daily basis. I was greeted by the staff of GC, over 200 employees in the Chengdu office with sincere kindness. There were gifts waiting for me on my desk. I would find out who gave them to me and try and return the nice gesture by giving them something in return like chocolate or some kind of sweet. Then, we got into what I realized was a “tug of war gift exchanges”. They would give me different kinds of Chinese teas, cool Chinese medicine, Asian fruits, all things to bring health and happiness to my life.
A simple task is never unnoticed. For example, one time I brought a form from another school to a colleague in the office and she returned by giving me an apple. It was ready in her hand to show her appreciation. I was shocked by her appreciation for such a small task. On many occasions, similar situations would occur. GC staff feels more like a family than a work environment.
As my last day in the Chengdu office lunch approached today, I admired each of them chatting so much with each other as we waited by the elevator. I wondered if I was in the U.S. how much chatting would really happen between colleagues as they wait by the elevator. I will miss GC very much and encourage others to join the team. You can study or teach anywhere in China, but there is only one GreatChina. Other foreigners I met in Chengdu admired our community feel to it. If you choose GC, it will make studying or working in China a memorable experience because you can be part of that family. And Chinese people value nothing more in life then family.”