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My summer language course (Copenhagen Business Confucius Institute: International Summer School at Renmin University)

Last July I was lucky to stay in Beijing 4 weeks and attend the Copenhagen Business Confucius Institute (CBCI)- International Summer School at Renmin University, one of the most renowned university in Beijing. Before the scholarship, I have never been in Beijing and did not know what a great experience I will have during the summer month.

Sanlitun Soho in Beijing

Application and Preparation

The application was easy. After attending an event and getting information from the institute, I read up the guidelines online and send in my motivational letter before the deadline. I added the website further below this blog post.

After I got accepted for the scholarship, every step was organized and I got help along the way. From the type of Visa I need to apply for, where to stay (the accommodations were right at the campus of Renmin University) and how to register for the courses online. There was an information meeting where two students from last year’s trip told us about their experiences and were open to answering any question. All in all, I left Copenhagen all prepared and had no issues getting the visa for China and also, I didn’t have to worry about where to stay or how to get to the university.

Arrival

My friend Gul-Mina and I arrived a week prior the summer school to get to know Beijing before we started our summer semester. The metro system is easy to understand, the VPN apps worked and the weather was nice 🙂 We had a great week before moving onto campus and starting our courses at the summer school. Other students who didn’t came a week earlier like us, were picked up by university staff members on given time and dates. Moreover, we all had a local buddies who would answer our everyday questions and help us getting a metro card, SIM card or get around campus.


 

The building where the Chinese courses were taught

The dorm room I shared with Gul-Mina 🙂

 

 


Accommodation and Campus life

We shared one room with two beds, desks, and closets. I actually have to admit that I was first not sure if I can stay one month with another person in the same room. But actually, it was much more fun and social to share my room with Gul-Mina 🙂 She was always there to study with me, grab a bite to eat or get a bubble tea downstairs. The other scholarship holder stayed in the same dorms, therefore we could all meet after class and head into Beijing or go for hotpot together. It was so fun to have everyone around 🙂

Enjoying a hotpot night with friends is one of my favourite memories of Beijing

Courses

The summer school offered more than just language courses. We could choose between Business, Marketing, History, Art, Classical Literature, European Politics and even Dancing classes. I took a Chinese course to improve my language skills and the teacher was mixing the lessons up with grammar, reading, written part, and group work. We had a vocabulary test every week. By the end of the course we had to take a test. Since we are scholarship recipients, we had to take an HSK test which was a great opportunity to see on which level my Chinese skills were.

We choose the pre-intermediate Chinese course to re-touch our basic Chinese knowledge before starting our exchange semester which was right after the summer school

Freetime

Don’t worry, the courses didn’t take up all days of the week and we did not spend every free minute of our summer studying for tests. My friend Gul-Mina and I had a lot of chances to discover Beijing, eat the local food, enjoy the nightlife, go shopping, and visit the sightseeing spots of the capital city. There were social events and trips organized by the university every weekend and every one was free to join and meet the other summer school students.

Gulmina and I were always sightseeing together. This is us at Tiananmen Square

On our last Sunday we joined the day trip to the Great Wall organized by the university

 

My conclusion

Without a doubt, I loved every minute in Beijing and couldn’t recommend it enough. Not only was the summer school helpful and fun at the same time, the city was amazing and personally, I love architecture and Beijing had lots of it to offer (see my article: My favourite spots in Beijing (architecture version)).

View from Tiananmen Square towards the Forbidden City

I would recommend everyone who studies Chinese or wants to improve their Chinese skills to apply for the Copenhagen Business Confucius Institute (CBCI)- International Summer School at Renmin University Scholarship. It was such great experiences that enriched more than just my language skills. I would do it again if I could! Check CBCI website for the deadlines and other scholarships. The deadline for the Summer School Scholarship last year was around March 🙂 http://www.cbci.dk/

 

If you have any questions, you can feel free to ask me 🙂


If you liked this blog post, check out the experiences I made in Beijing: What I like about China (and why I might miss it in Denmark)
My latest article which was shared on the Huffington Post : Friendships and relationships with a due date

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