As part of the strategic activities of the SU SBA, members of the Faculty's management - Dean Prof. Ing. Daniel Stavárek, Ph.D., Vice-Dean for Foreign Affairs Assoc. Prof. RNDr. Ing. Roman Šperka, Ph.D. and Vice-Dean for Science and Research Assoc. Prof. Mgr. Ing. Michal Tvrdoň, Ph.D., went on a carefully planned tour of China from October 20 to 28, 2018, specifically to visit 3 Chinese universities in 2 cities. The purpose of business meetings were mutual exchanges of non-graduate students, the double degree Bachelor's program in Economics and Management conducted in English, mutual long-term visits of professors and scientific and research cooperation.
The first stop was at Dongguan University of Technology, School of Business and Economics. The city of Dongguan has approximately 7.5 million inhabitants and is a medium-sized Chinese city. It is located in the south of China in Guangdong Province in an industrial area near Hong Kong, Macao, Shenzhen (10 million inhabitants) and Guangzhou (12 million inhabitants). The city is home to Huawei's headquarters, and the university itself has a faculty that cooperates directly with this giant to produce mobile phones. The economically oriented faculty is about the same size as the SU SBA and offers a Bachelor of education in English. Due to its location, there is tropical weather with high humidity in this area. Dongguan University of Technology has approximately 30.000 of students, whereas the School of Business and Economics has 5.000. Within two days, members of the management met with faculty and university representatives, led by Vice-Dean Liu Wei and Vice-Rector Yang Minlin. There was also a visit to the campus and classrooms where regular lessons were held. The Dean succumbed to temptation and, within the course of Principles of Finance, gave an impromptu lecture on the topic "Financial system in Czechia" for Chinese students studying in English.
Subsequently, the representatives of the SU SBA moved to northeast China to the Province of Gansu and its capital, Lanzhou. Lanzhou has a population of 3.5 million and is of one of the largest cities in the north of China and its dominant feature is the Yellow River. The city lies on the historic Silk Road and is known for its heavy and petrochemical industries. It is currently experiencing a boom in the construction and inflow of other residents, and therefore the local government is building another urban area "Lanzhou new area" for another 1 million people. The city is built on the edge of the desert area of Gobi and temperatures range from -5 degrees Celsius in winter to 22 in the summer. Lanzhou University of Finance and Economics is home to 25.000 students. It has a total of 17 faculties that are economically oriented. The university offers education at all levels of study and majors in statistics and accounting. Within two days, the Czech delegation got to know two campuses and met with Vice –Rector Hu Kai and Deans of 2 faculties - School of International Economics and Trade and School of Business Management. Representatives of Human Resources and International Office were also present at the meeting.
In Lanzhou, there was also a meeting with a delegation from the third Chinese university - Shanxi University of Finance and Economics, from a not-too-distant city of Taiyuan (5 million inhabitants) in Shanxi Province. Taiyuan has deep historical roots that dates back to 497 BC, and was home to more Chinese dynasties. It is also called the Dragon City. Average temperatures range from -11 degrees Celsius in winter to 30 degrees in summer and it lies downstream of the Yellow River from Lanzhou. The university has 30.000 students at 24 faculties. The most powerful fields of study include economics, management, accounting, and finance.
Chinese universities have shown an eminent interest in cooperation with the SU SBA. Local or provincial governments in China intensively support the international cooperation of universities, but on the other hand, the communist system limits this development to various restrictions on foreign visits by representatives of Chinese universities. In the case of Dongguan, this is compounded by the fact that their sister city is Opava, so it is also in the interests of politicians on both sides to develop this cooperation. The Czech delegation has agreed with all universities on a specific procedure for cooperation and a schedule for the mobility of students and teachers and the preparation of a joint study Bachelor program in Economics and Management in English. The tangible results include the arrival of 2 Chinese professors in January 2019 at the Department of Finance and Accounting and their training stay for 6 months. In addition, the arrival of the Chinese exchange students in the WS 2019/20 and 3 long-term training stays of the SU SBA’s professors with Chinese partners in the WS 2019/20. Let our students search for some of the aforementioned locations in the offer for the semester study abroad program as of the WS 2019/20.
China belongs, of course, in our view to exotic countries with a completely different culture we are accustomed to in Europe. For students, campuses are their own world with dormitories, restaurants, laundries and leisure facilities where they spend most of their student life. The Chinese almost do not use cash. When making payments, they use mobile phones, along with using Chinese social networks such as QQ, WeChat or Ali Pay. The Internet and many of our common services such as Google, Facebook, Instagram, Viber, Whatsapp, etc. are blocked. Their cuisine is not different in terms of breakfast, lunch to dinner and is exclusively based on vegetables and meat (popular are chicken claws and hot spices). The so-called "hot-pots", where every guest in the restaurant cooks for himself/herself according to his/her own choice of ingredients, are used extensively. The Europeans would miss bread, chocolate, milk or coffee. They do not have these commodities in regular stores. Toilets are not equipped with classical facilities and it is necessary to learn a special technique for their use In China, the air quality is worse; however, the transport infrastructure is excellent. Technical amenities in cars and in public can be seen everywhere. In cities, there are skyscrapers at every turn. Is it worth going to China? Surely, it is.