Dr. William Wei (second from left) led 17 School of Business students on a study tour to Japan and Hong Kong. Here, they pose with Paul Hennig, an Albertan working in Hong Kong as the head of technical and theatre production with the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority, which envisions a vibrant new cultural quarter for Hong Kong located on Victoria Harbour.
In late April, 17 students from MacEwan University’s School of Business journeyed to Japan and Hong Kong S.A.R. with Dr. William Wei on an educational tour that provided a first-hand look at both the businesses and cultures of each country.
“Asia has always amazed me – the infrastructure, technology and culture,” says Shahzeb Ijaz, a third-year Asia Pacific Management student who is interested in career opportunities abroad.
He says his experience during the tour, including visits to companies like Toyota in Nagoya, gave him perspective on how to conduct business in Asia and an appreciation for cultural differences.
For Harleigh Zack, it was information she knew she could use right away. Not long after returning from Japan and Hong Kong she was set to start an internship with Husky, so hearing from the company’s Chief Financial Officer Darren Andruko, was incredibly valuable.
In our “Where in the World” series, students and faculty members share highlights from this year’s study tours, exchanges, internships and field schools. Talk to a faculty advisor or visit MacEwan.ca/EducationAbroad for opportunities.
Andruko, who had recently transferred from Calgary to the company’s Asia Pacific office, shared with the students the impact of language, cultural values and relationships on business in Hong Kong. “I was very interested in taking everything I learned from the Husky Energy presentation and applying it to my internship,” says Harleigh, who was looking forward to experiencing first-hand the workplace culture Andruko had described.
The appreciation both Shahzeb and Harleigh took from the tour is exactly what William had hoped for. “You can research these countries and companies online, but it’s just not the same as being with and speaking with the people who live there,” he says.
So the group made the most of opportunities to meet with company representatives, including some MacEwan alumni who are among the approximately 300,000 Canadian passport-holders who live and work in Hong Kong.
“It’s such a great chance to gain a real-life understanding of what’s going on in another part of the world,” says William.