Who you ask for guidance is an important part of your search for the perfect degree, diploma, or English language course. Not only do you need to make sure that you’re speaking with your education counsellor in a language that you’re comfortable with – it’s also nice to know that you have a similar cultural perspective.
Speaking with an expert in education who understands your employment opportunities both in Australia and your home country can even give you a leg up when you graduate.
So we’ve put together a list of our top experts who can provide you with education counselling in Mandarin. From Victoria to New South Wales and Western Australia, they each have a unique approach to education counselling. We spoke with them to find out more about how they can help you on your study journey.
1. Alan from Western Australia
“Step out of your comfort zone”, Alan recommends his students. “Its not just about the goal of a university degree, it’s also about the journey”.
Originally from Singapore, Alan came to Australia in 1987. Today – in addition to his role as an Education Expert with Sofiri – he teaches Marketing and Business in an international college, and manages their School of Business.
Alan has a wealth of experience to share with the students he counsels. From once owning three franchises and chairing a Marketing Board, to developing marketing courses for international students, working with international students in a construction school, and holding a management role in the not-for-profit sector – Alan’s passion is being ‘at the front-line’ and working directly with international students.
“Step out of your comfort zone. It’s not just about the goal of a university degree, it’s also about the journey.”
Of his personal experience in the Australian education system, Alan says, “I completed secondary school here in Perth, Australia. Returning to Singapore for my National Service, I completed my Bachelor of Arts (Social Science) in 1994. Following that, I completed a Master of Business Administration and a Graduate Diploma in Education (Tertiary and Adult).”
“I learned very quickly that the Australian education system places a strong emphasis on critical thinking, when one of my first experiences in education here was almost failing a history test. When I asked my teacher how to improve (I usually score quite high in history), he said, ‘you gave me the dates and told me what happened – but what were the consequences of what happened?’. In Australia, you are not only taught to memorise information – you’re also taught how to apply the knowledge you have memorised. ”
Another important piece of advise that Alan offers his students? “I will definitely ask you to avoid trying Vegemite. And be careful of drop bears. I will also ask all of you to try more exotic meats like crocodile, emu, and kangaroo”.
2. Vivien from New South Wales
“Compared with education in China”, Vivien tells us, “Australian education is more focused on practice, communication, and teamwork.”
After studying at Charles Sturt University and the University of Sydney, Vivien went on to a career in accounting and project management. Today, she’s the Managing Director of an online travel agency, as well as an Education Expert with Sofiri.
“I like to help people”, she says. “I enjoy chatting with young people about what they can study to achieve their career goals. It’s so important to take future immigration needs into account in these conversations.”
“There’s many good things to say about life in Australia. That’s why I recommend it to future students. Not only did I enjoy studying here myself – I think it’s one of the best countries in the world for food! One of my recommendations to people when they first arrive is to try Scampi at the Fish Market here in Sydney”.
“I find Australia a very multicultural place. University and college study here is a good way to make friends from around the world.”
“In my approach to education counselling, I’ll chat with you about courses which offer internship programs. You’ll find that internships will provide you with invaluable work experience and, most importantly, help you set your career goals”.
3. Zhenwei from Victoria
A secondary school teacher and engineering tutor at RMIT University, Zhenwei tells us that one of the most important questions he asks his students when they’re weighing up what they should study is, ‘what course is most worthy of your time?’.
“It’s important to balance your interests with the future job opportunities you’ll have when you graduate”, he says. “A good aspect of the Australian education system is that it gives students plenty of work experience and internship opportunities. It also provides clear pathways to future careers after study”.
Zhenwei is positive about the employment opportunities in Australia for international student graduates. “The Australian job market needs skilled workers from different cultural backgrounds. Diversity is so important for the workplace, and this is something that Australian employers recognise”.
A former international student himself, Zhenwei recommends Melbourne as a study location. “The air is very clean here”, he tell us, “and is free of industrial pollution. International students from China will also find that Australian people are very friendly, and are enthusiastic towards helping strangers. There’s a lot to like about Australian culture, like freedom here to express your ideas. There’s also an openness towards accepting people of different backgrounds”.
You can speak with Alan, Vivien, or Zhenwei to get guidance on your study options in Australia now. Get advice about which English language course, vocational training, or university study will suit your needs. Our Education Experts are some of the most knowledgeable professionals in the education industry today.
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