Torben Segelken

April 21, 2015, by Student blogger

I found my job in China in an Irish bar

Torben Segelken is originally from Germany and studied MSc International Management at The University of Nottingham Ningbo China (UNNC). After graduating in 2013 he stayed in Ningbo and is now working for trading company TECCO Ltd.

Why did you decide to come and study at The University of Nottingham Ningbo China (UNNC)/in China? What motivated you?

I’d done an internship in Shanghai during my bachelors studies in Germany and had been really impressed by the energy of the city and the opportunities available there. I was also really keen to travel around more of China and Asia. After I finished my bachelors a friend studying at the Nottingham UK Campus mentioned UNNC and I thought it would be a great opportunity to come back to China, learn more about the country and to get a masters taught in English at the same time.

What did you gain from your studies?

I’d studied business studies at bachelors and I still wasn’t sure what I wanted to do professionally so I chose the course because of its broad range of subjects and the wide variety of skills I would gain. It was also great to have the opportunity to learn some Chinese while I was studying, which, while I am a long way from being fluent, has been invaluable to me while living here.

And what about China generally?

Being in Ningbo and in China generally has been amazing for networking. You get to meet and socialise with people from all over the world who are involved in so many different careers and professions. Ningbo is very business and trade orientated and you never know what opportunities you might come across at any moment. In fact, I met my current boss in an Irish bar in Ningbo – here in China social meetings can often turn into professional opportunities and that’s really exciting.??

What are you doing now?

I had wanted to stay in China after finishing my studies so I was really pleased that a chance meeting in a bar turned into a job! I now work for TECCO Ltd in Ningbo, a trading company that sources products from in and around Ningbo to sell to customers mostly in France, Belgium and the UK. We source parts for machines and have started producing our own plastic injection moulding. On a day-to-day basis I deal with suppliers, liaising with them over customer requirements, quality control and delivery, as well as organising the shipping of parts from Ningbo’s huge port. It’s a really broad job, which requires cultural understanding of both Europe and China, as well as knowledge of how business and trade works. It can be hard work but our company is expanding and it’s fantastic to be here at this time.

Do you like living in Ningbo? What’s it like as a city?

I really like living in Ningbo and seeing how the city is developing and changing. Since I arrived here I’ve seen entire shopping centres and apartment complexes get built, the new metro system open, a public city bike scheme launched and the high-speed rail line to Shanghai completed. It’s a really exciting time to be in the city. I have done two internships in Shanghai and while I enjoyed being there too, I much prefer living in Ningbo. Ningbo is smaller than Shanghai and as a result it’s much easier to travel around and the cost of living is cheaper. It’s also possible to get to know local people here and I have many good Chinese friends.

Do you plan to stay in China long-term?

I think I will stay here for a few more years yet – I don’t have any real plans to return to Europe.

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Posted in ChinaChoosing ChinaInternshipsNingboUNNC life