From the People’s Daily app.
This is Story in the Story.
As China’s society opens more to the world, younger generations from around the world are attracted by China’s booming tech sector and unique culture.
According to the Ministry of Education, 61,594 Africans were enrolled at Chinese universities, research institutions and other educational facilities in 2016, up 23.7 percent from the previous year. Growing number represented just less than 15 percent of China’s international student population.
The numbers also revealed that China now offers 43,000 training programs, over 20,000 governmental scholarships and more than 1,300-degree programs to students from African countries.
Many of the aspiring college graduates participated in the BRI program and learned about the opportunities that exist in the fast-growing Chinese market. As China works closely with the students’ countries, they were provided with opportunities to explore the charm of Chinese culture and its future.
Today’s Story in the Story will look at African students who have chosen to pursue their goals in China with the help of Chinese government scholarships.
Participants pose for photos during a send-off event for South African recipients of scholarships provided by the Chinese government in Pretoria, South Africa, Aug. 16, 2018. (Photo: Xinhua)
Thanks to the scholarships provided by the Chinese government, 32 South African students are on their way to China to earn an undergraduate, Master’s, or doctoral degree in 17 academic disciplines.
During the send-off event in Pretoria, Lin Songtian, Chinese ambassador to South Africa urged the students to be the champions of China-South Africa friendship.
"South Africa now faces major opportunities in its economic and social transformation and has huge demand for professional and skilled personnel. We hope that upon finishing your studies you will return to serve your country and your people and contribute to South Africa's development," he said.
He added that people-to-people exchange has become an important part of the bilateral comprehensive strategic partnership.
"Our cooperation in education, culture, science and technology, health, youth and women continue to expand and prosper, greatly enhancing the mutual understanding and friendship between our two peoples," he said.
Isasiphinkosi Mdingi, 24, from the Eastern Cape province left for China in early September to pursue a Master's in Public Administration in Beijing.
As she told Xinhua News Agency, she sees the opportunity as a way to ensure that more women will have a meaningful role in the mainstream economy.
"This opportunity means a lot of things to me," Mdingi said, "this shows that your dreams are possible and second, your destiny is never tied to your background, which is my favorite quote. This means that dedication and hard work can pay off. I will be looking at how China has been able to ensure that women play a big role in the economy."
South African recipients of the Chinese government scholarships take a selfie during a send-off event in Pretoria, South Africa, Aug. 16, 2018. (Photo: Xinhua)
Wendy Adams, from the Higher Education and Training Department, said the program continues to expose many young people to unlimited opportunities.
"We annually receive scholarships from the Chinese government and it covers student tuition, accommodation, stipends and medical aid. Our priority, as the department is postgraduate, means we are increasing the number of PhD graduates. We have an opportunity to import skills," Adams said.
She added that because China is advanced in the technology sector, the students have an opportunity to develop the necessary skills to work in that industry. Some have even spoken about the business opportunities they have found in China.
Established in 2003, the Chinese Government Scholarship Program has helped hundreds of South Africans study in China.
(Produced by Nancy Yan Xu, Terry Guanlin Li, Raymond Mendoza, Lance Crayon and Da Hang. Music by: bensound.com. Text from Xinhua and China Daily)