- Language Tips
A birds-eye view of the Oxford International College of Changzhou.
Founded by a group of Old Etonians, BE Education is advancing cultural, educational and business ties between China and the UK through innovative international schools in China.
Open to both Chinese and foreign students, Oxford International College of Changzhou demonstrates China's commitment to internationalization through its state-of-the-art 10-hectare lakeside campus, complete with a boat house to rival that of Eton College.
BE recognized the growing concern in China over the talent pool of graduates entering the workforce. 2014 will see a record 7.3 million Chinese graduates entering the job market. However, many lack the soft skills necessary to succeed, leaving them struggling to find work in both Chinese and international companies.
"The schools BE is building combine the academic rigor of the Chinese system with the soft skills taught through British extracurricular activities," said William Vanbergen founder of BE Education.
"We help students develop into bilingual, bicultural leaders who will be able to help bring international business into China and help Chinese companies become more successful on the international stage."
From tai chi to rowing, to arts and drama, extracurricular classes build the vital skills of confidence, perseverance, teamwork and leadership. These are combined seamlessly with the Chinese focus on academic study - already yielding the top GCSE results in the country in 2013.
Overseas parents looking to give their children an edge are also increasingly attracted by the bicultural environment of OIC schools. Graduating with fluent Mandarin and a deep cross-cultural understanding makes students extremely attractive to top universities and almost guarantees quality jobs upon graduation.
Another benefit is that OIC schools in China are half the price of public traditional schools in the UK or the US.
Having an international boarding school in Changzhou has played an important part in the recent development of the city.
This is especially true in the city's Wujin district, which has become the location of choice for many new international businesses entering China.
As China looks to urbanize another 400 million people over the next 10 years, Changzhou's rapid growth has led to other local governments and real estate developers approaching BE to add value to future developments.
Having recently signed an MOU in the House of Lords with Plymouth University and the city of Huai'an and arranged for Huai'an to be twinned with Milton Keynes, UK, BE Education is continuing to help drive the UK - China partnership into the future.
World Eye Reports provided the story