"Good afternoon Dean Liu, Professors, staff members, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen. It’s my privilege and pleasure to speak today on behalf of the graduating international students. It has been a special time for me in reflecting on all that has happened over the last almost 2 years since we entered the Guanghua community.
I first visited China in 2008, when I was a volunteer at the Beijing Olympic Games in media operations for three months. During that time I worked with a Chinese and international team of fellow young college graduates in the volleyball stadium. I formed a particularly great friendship with one Beijinger, however over time, we lost touch. So you can imagine my great surprise and delight that seven years later, during the first week of our program back in the summer of 2015, I saw my old friend, Harry Liu, member of the MSEM Class, across the room during dance practice for the Guanghua Opening Ceremony. From that moment I have felt extremely at home at Guanghua.
Guanghua has given us a huge variety of experiences and access. There was the entrepreneurial focus, with the ability to meet and work closely with local entrepreneurs through intensive courses. There were the crazy events that were held regularly, such as Running Man, where we tore all across and up and down the building and around campus – as well as the surprise of the karaoke in the Inner Mongolian-style yurt with Wharton students during one marketing joint course.
The PKU and Guanghua platform have allowed some of us to meet with and learn from incredible people, such as Warren Buffett and LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman. We have also celebrated each other’s successes, be it winning case competitions across the Asia Pacific, starting up businesses and securing funding, accepting PhD scholarships, great jobs – as well as personal moments, such as congratulating classmates on marriages, babies, even Guanghua basketball wins. We have also had the opportunity to share our experiences abroad through the dual degree and exchange program with each other that have enriched our MBA education.
The largest takeaway I have from my Guanghua experience is that an education such as this is a gift. I am so glad to have been able to complete this MBA. It has opened my eyes to the possibilities across industries and functions, how to approach work, and how to look for opportunities and position myself and my organisation effectively to be in the best place to seize these.
So on behalf of the international students I would like to thank the people who have provided education to us in all senses of the word.
Thank you to our family members and friends for your support, efforts and investment in us. I’d like to personally thank my parents Phil and Jo who are joining us from Australia today, as well as my fiancé Matt. We also have family members and friends here from France, Indonesia, the U.S., India, Mongolia, Japan, South Korea, and from all across China to name a few to celebrate our graduation.
Thank you to our Professors, the Guanghua management, and administration team for your passion and dedication to your teaching and research, our own individual growth and the ongoing success of the Guanghua School. One of the best things about the Guanghua MBA in my eyes was the opportunity for students to take as many courses as we liked, which allowed us to work on our weaknesses and fortify our strengths, so thank you for your support in this. Particular thanks to our class coordinator Nick Guan for always looking after us.
So to wrap up, I would like to say good luck to all fellow graduates, as well as everyone in our Guanghua community. I’m very much looking forward to staying in touch and maintaining our network, both in China and anywhere we may find ourselves in future across the world, and seeing the joint value we can create together.
Thank you very much!"