Raj Shah, an engineering student at NMIMS, went on an internship to China. Here is his experience:

“It started with getting registered with AIESEC Mumbai and then finding a suitable exchange opportunity that I was interested in. Russia. Egypt, Taiwan and China were the available options for me. Since China is a neighbor of India and a competitor of Indian economy, I decided to pack my bags for the Chinese experience.

On 14th May 2011, my flight departed from IGI Airport, New Delhi to Beijing, China. As soon as I landed, I was amused to see a different world full of huge buildings, long and clean roads. However, the language barrier was taking a toll on my excitement as none could explain the way out in English. Finally, my AIESEC manager, Joe in a traditional Chinese manner, welcomed me.

Then came the next shock for me, my accommodation was promised as a home stay, and no such arrangements had been made. I was settled in a hotel alone for the next week. I could not interact with any of the hotel staff. When I was hungry, I had no idea, what to eat? I, being a pure vegetarian, was heading towards a food crisis. The first day I relaxed, had the home food.

Next afternoon Joe turned to my room. I was taken to my workplace. It was in Wangjing. I was explained about my job. My job basically catered to conducting workshops on health, manners, entrepreneurship and Indian culture.

All my excitement drenched out of my body by the end of the day. I wanted to go back. This was the turning point in my life. I decided to take this as a challenge in my life and come out successful. I decided to learn Chinese. Within 2 days, my confidence was on new high. I had learnt to come out of problems, all alone. I had developed a control over my mind.

After a week, I was shifted to a dormitory. There I had 4 more mates in my room. Now, my life was easy. They were students and understood basic English. I got involved in their activities. I had made new friends.

Then, I was invited for a trainee party at the Olympic park on the coming Sunday. I was again excited to explore new things. I met more trainees at the park, about 160 trainees gathered from about 25 countries. I interacted with them, collected their email ids and made a google group for AIESEC Exchange trainees in Beijing. The group was aimed to help new trainees. Anyone could post a question and answers were found within minutes.

This initiative of mine got me a lot of accreditation from many more trainees. Now I had more than 300 friends in China, within 10 days.

Rest of the trip, I went to different monuments, places of interest with my group and partied with my friends every weekend. I did my job and enjoyed life. I had learnt a new lesson in my life. Never lose hope, think of solution, be brave, take responsibility on your shoulder and see, you are the creator of your own destiny.

To sum up, I would like to say, when I came back to India on 26th June 2011, I was a transformed individual. The way I perceived life had changed. So did my family’s view about me. They started considering me as a much matured individual. That is where I got my ultimate satisfaction.

AIESEC Exchange Program is a must participate program for the youth of today. The exposure we get is tremendous. For me, it has been a life changing experience. Thank you AIESEC Mumbai and tons of good wishes to AIESEC BJTU for making my experience a lifetime experience.”

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