Author: Anna Malchow

Talking with local workers

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In addition to meeting with major companies, I was able to learn about Chinese businesses from locals. Every city that we visited had a rich background and many street markets to explore. With my limited Chinese, I was able to converse with the local market workers. When we visited the Great Wall there was one woman whom I talked with while she made me a chocolate pancake. She was excited to learn about my culture and why I was visiting China. I learned that she has a son in his 30’s working for a computer company in Beijing. She wishes that he was married so she could have a grandchild. When I tried to swap contact information she politely rejected and informed me that she didn’t have a cellphone. She was such a pleasant woman and because I brought her my friends to order from her vendor she gave me a free pancake to go! By talking with someone and actually learning about them, it helps create a better world. In business, it is important to understand coworkers and your business partners to strengthen business interactions and relationships.

One night when I was walking around Wangfujing, a worker called me over and asked if I am Chinese. After I explained to him that I am from America, he insists on seeing a dollar bill. After inspecting the dollar for a few minutes and asking some questions what it is like to live in America, he requests if he could keep it in exchange for a few dumplings he was selling. I obliged and was able to take a photo of him holding my US dollar for a memento. It was fun to talk to someone who was so interested in the American culture.

When we were in Shanghai I visited a bracelet shop in YuYuan. While she was making me a bracelet she told me a little about her life. She taught herself through online videos how to create different types of jade bracelets. She has a daughter in elementary school, her mother works in a baozi shop. She is an inspiration for her level of dedication to her craft. She is proof that if you are diligent and want to do something with your life it is possible to pick up a new talent and capitalize on it. By being able to talk to local workers, I was able to enhance my knowledge of Chinese culture deeply. 

 

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Hangzhou: Day 1

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Today marks our two week checkpoint. So far we have met with 13 companies (ranging from pharmaceutical packaging to ground breaking construction machines), ran around on the Great Wall of China, haggled in the Pearl market (Beijing), rode an overnight train to Shanghai, watched an acrobat show, got custom made suits, explored the metro systems, and so much more!
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Today was our first official full day in Hangzhou. Our first company meeting was with Nokia. My friends model the welcome sign that Nokia put together for our college…Today marks our two week checkpoint. So far we have met with 13 companies (ranging from pharmaceutical packaging to ground breaking construction machines), ran around on the Great Wall of China, haggled in the Pearl market (Beijing), rode an overnight train to Shanghai, watched an acrobat show, got custom made suits, explored the metro systems, and so much more! ------------------------------------------ Today was our first official full day in Hangzhou. Our first company meeting was with Nokia. My friends model the welcome sign that Nokia put together for our college...(Ben and Elliott)

In the meeting room we discussed how Nokia focuses on the European and Asian market. The five main products they provide are mobile networks, fixed networks, optical/IP network, technologies, and applications/analytics.

Around the lunch table we were able to talk to Jin (he is a quality manager with a specialty in Lean manufacturing). He takes pride that he is able to help his company to produce products more efficiently and be more cost effective.
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The second company we visited today was Feish. While there was an apparent language barrier, Isaac and Luke helped translate throughout the presentation.

(David, Moses, Josh, Phillip, Joe, Brendon, and Steven)

At Feish, they displayed innovative products for everyone, electronic kid toys, fancy coffee machines, collapsible furniture, etc! Currently they create products by request, but they hope to soon create proactive products for the general marketplace.
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After the company briefings, some of my friends went out to try hot pot. We ordered five types of beef and put it in the boiling pot of soup. It was a perfect hot meal to end todays rainy day!(Nathan, Phillip, Caitlin, Josh, Jacob)

 

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Walking on the Great Wall

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On Saturday the 7th, we drove an hour from Beijing to get to the Great Wall. Snow started to fall down as we rode the gondola up the mountains. The weather was perfect, the little flakes created a perfect scenery with the surrounding forests. 长城 (The Great Wall) is one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, which spans a distance of roughly 13,171 miles. The section that we were allowed to walk upon spread from tower 20-1. My friends and I spent a couple hours climbing on the wall. We walked to tower 20 (which is the highest peak accessible) and then walked back towards tower six which had one of the staircases down to the bottom. The Great Wall is an impressive human achievement and the view is well worth the hike!

 

climbing the Great Wall of China

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