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China Moves Up to Fifth as Importer of Students [The Chronicle of Higher Education]

September 15, 2008

By Mara Hvistendahl, The Chronicle of Higher Education

When Seo Ming-jun came to Shanghai Jiaotong University five years ago to study Chinese, she was planning to stay a year, then return to her native Seoul to complete her undergraduate degree. But halfway through the year she liked China so much that she applied for a four-year degree program.

Her parents, who wanted her to study closer to home, vehemently opposed the idea. But Ms. Seo, now 26, believed a degree from a Chinese university could give her an advantage later on.

“Sino-Korean business is really developing,” she explained. “Companies need people who can speak Chinese.” She enrolled at Shanghai’s Fudan University in its Chinese-language bachelor-of-arts program, which is directed at foreigners interested in working in or doing business with China.

The idea turned out not to be so unconventional. Ms. Seo arrived at Fudan to find a thriving Korean community — along with hundreds of other full-time foreign students. Last semester the university counted 3,376 international students, over half of them in full-time degree programs. More than 1,590 came from South Korea. [Click here to read the rest of the story. Subscription only.]

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