Internships in China are currently a very popular experience and they look great on your CV. There are many reasons why people wish to do an internship in China. Some do it purely to gain work experience, others do it to experience China and it’s culture, while yet others wish to practice their Chinese language skills in a company environment. With the Chinese economy continuing to grow and show it’s importance on a global scale, people see investing in an internship in China as investing in their future. If you wish to know how companies in China work, how Chinese culture affects business, learn basic Mandarin, as well as do a meaningful job in an interesting company, China is the perfect place for your internship.
Most companies are either local companies with partly foreign staff or large international companies with branches in China. Some companies do require fluent Chinese speakers, but most are happy with a very basic/intermediate level of Chinese. To be able to choose from a wider range of internships and to make the most of your time in China, we recommended that you take an intensive Chinese course before your internship starts.
The bigger and higher profile the company, the higher its requirements for interns will be. Typically, the ideal intern is one who is coming for a longer duration (4-6 months is very desirable), has relevant previous work experience/educational background and can speak some Chinese. This is as well as being fluent in English in both speaking and writing. If you do not possess all of these criteria, we can still organize an internship for you, however more flexibility may be required regarding the companies that you would be happy to work with.
Legally, a company is not allowed to give a salary to interns in China. However, many companies do offer a food/transportation allowance that is equivalent to a small monthly/daily stipend. The longer the duration of your internship, the better the chance of having such a stipend. Most companies do not however provide accommodation, aside from internships in the field of hotels and hospitality, which will have higher requirements for interns.
Typically, the longer you stay in the internship, the better opportunity you can get and the more meaningful experience you can achieve. Most companies require a minimum of 3 months for their internships. Some companies also allow for an internship of two months or even of just one month. However, for such a length, your daily tasks will likely be more simple and less meaningful in terms of your learning experience. If you can do an internship for a period of 5 or 6 months, that would be the optimal duration.
An Airport Pickup or Survival Kit can be purchased together with the program. This includes having the LTL driver pick you up at arrivals and driving you to your accommodation. During your time in China, the LTL staff is always available to help you with any kind of problem you might have, be it related to living in China, studying Chinese or working in a Chinese company. For any kind of issue inside your specific company, direct communication with your manager is best.
When you sign up for an internship program with LTL, your advisor invites you for interviews with suitable companies. The aim of these interviews is for you to get as much information about the company and position as possible. You need to know what your day to day work life will be like, in order to not have any surprises later on. Once you arrive in China and have begun working, if you are then unhappy with your choice and you wish to leave your company and find another internship, LTL will do its best to find an alternative option for you. However in this case, due to the urgent nature of the organization, flexibility on the available options is important.
LTL are specialist internship coordinators that provide a service for people who do not wish to spend their own time and effort contacting different companies and personnel to find their internship. This kind of work requires a lot of effort, patience and understanding of the field, as well as an understanding of China itself (which can take a long time to achieve!). As established internship coordinators, we have a great list of partner companies (both local and international) that we work with and some that hire interns exclusively through our program. We understand the needs of interns and the requirements of the companies and are able to provide accommodation and a service package that means you don’t have to worry about a thing. We also offer a great free social program, a chance to make friends from all over the world, optional language classes and most importantly, 24/7 support both before and after you arrive in China.
The LTL community in both Beijing and Shanghai is very active and lively. From the first day, you will meet other LTL interns and students during the welcome breakfast, school dinners and weekend activities. As part of the community, you can join LTL social events that are organized throughout the week and get to know your fellow classmates/interns. For most of our interns the LTL community is where they organize weekend trips, dinners and birthday parties and they make many friends along the way.
Making friends in China is as easy or as difficult as in any other place in the world, with the main exception that the culture is somewhat different. Many Chinese locals are quite curious about foreigners and some may have never spoken to a foreigner before. If you show interest in the person and their culture, in most cases they will reciprocate and be happy to spend time talking to you and maybe make plans to hang out further. For best results, it’s a good idea to meet people through common hobbies, such as sports, music events or other activities. A shared passion automatically gives you a connection with a person and something fun for you to talk about.
For more information about our Internships in China and to see a selection of current intern positions we are looking to fill, visit our Internships Homepage.