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哈佛实习生在中粮  21英语网  佚名  2015-10-14    



Harvard interns at COFCO





COFCO, a large State Chinese enterprise opens its door to five interns from America’s Harvard University.


To get to the COFCO Plaza at Chaoyangmen from Peking University by subway you have to change lines twice. And the trains are always so crowded, it’s a struggle to get on, let a lone a seat. All this summer, Mathew has had the problem every day.

从北京大学到朝阳门的中粮福临门大厦,需要换两次地铁。每个早高峰,人会多得挤不上车。 这个夏天的这一段路,成了Matthew最挠头的事。

As he complained to his mentor Liu Ping, the manager of the imported wines department at COFCO Wines and Spirits Co., Ltd, "There are so many people in China.” And although Mathew put in the hours learning about China before his arrival, he still feels like a fish out of water.


Back in May, Matthew, a junior student who majors in history and microeconomics at Harvard University, attended a campus recruitment fair sponsored by the Harvard China Fund. Since 2006, the fund has made financial help available to Harvard teachers in China . It also finances Harvard students who want to find out more about Chinese enterprises.


Chi Jintao, COFCO’s Director of Human Resources, thought that the Harvard China Fund would be “a good opportunity for COFCO to introduce itself to overseas talent.”


Of the 45 students who have permission to work in China, Matthew and four other Harvard freshmen are the first to take internships with COFCO. All are curious about China, with its rapid economic growth, and filled with the desire to find out more about the country.


They all took Chinese electives at Harvard, but were still anxious about how they would be able to communicate once they arrived in China.


“Since my Chinese is limited I feared it would effect my performance at work. I was worried that my language skills simply weren’t good enough for me to be able to do a good job for COFCO” remarked Jan, who is shy, but looks people directly in the eye when he speaks to them. Jan studies management and environmental science at Harvard.


Niamh, another COFCO intern, was a little braver at first. A student of East Asian history who had traveled in the region, she thought she had already received her“culture shock”. But she does say she welcomes the opportunity COFCO has presented her and finds “the ‘newness’ of the experience” invigorating.


However, during her first week at work, Niamh met with communications problems. She though then, “Maybe I have to admit I have a problem making the progress I need; after all, we’re talking about the meeting of two different cultures.”


However, Jan, who works for COFCO’s strategy department, found that his concerns were unfounded. So many people at COFCO speak English, and his supervisor is a Harvard graduate. He’s found he can breathe again.


Young woman Amy is surprised by how approachable the top executives of this large Chinese enterprise are, as well as the general informality of the company. At COFCO’s Zhongliang Academy senior members joined in with the Hokey Kokey, a popular dance with American kids.

另一位叫Amy的女孩则对这家中国大型央企的核心管理层表现出的平易近人感到意外。在中粮忠良书院的培训课上,她们带领中粮高管成员大跳hocky pocky,这是一种在美国小孩中非常流行的舞蹈。

COFCO has placed the five interns with different departments. The company says it wants to create an open, welcoming environment, to allow its young American guests to learn all they can. COFCO offers more than just the usual intern experience; Jan, Amy, Niamh get hands-on experience in sales, customer visits, and even attend important meetings.


Calling a spade a spade, Chi Jintao, admits that all this is about promoting COFCO. “Before plans for acquisition, merger, setting up the company overseas, has to come promotion.” Not that COFCO doesn’t want new blood with the business acumen needed in its competitive field: “With the whole industry developing, there’s a real demand for fresh talent.”


But he doesn’t expect that the interns will stay with COFKO. He wants them to return to Harvard, taking back with them a new understanding of Chinese State enterprises. He says the company plans to receive a number of Harvard interns each year.







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