Ottawa International Students Entrepreneurship Program was created by a group of overseas educators and professionals to help international students, especially those from China, to adapt to life overseas and to achieve their educational and career goals.
According to UNESCO, China has more students pursuing education overseas than any other country: one in seven international students worldwide is from China. At the end of 2007, there was greater than one in four international students in Canada (over twenty thousand students) from China. However, around seventy percent of these failed to achieve their goals. Among these, 30 percent changed their program of study and twenty percent either postponed graduation or failed to graduate altogether. China’s economic growth and the improved financial status of its families have changed the background and situation of its typical international student. Aside from the few merit scholarship holders who have financial support to study abroad, many international students from China are from wealthy households and may not have passed the university entrance examinations in their own country. These students often come from one-child families and may have difficulty caring for them while away from home and motivating themselves for their studies.
OISEP aims to reach out to foreign students to help them adapt to their new situation and achieve their academic and personal goals, to reduce the cost of studying abroad, and to alleviate the worries of concerned parents. OISEP employs professionals with extensive teaching and entrepreneurship experience in China and abroad and a strong sense of responsibility. They include:
Yifeng Jiang, Project Coordinator, graduate of Huazhong Normal University (Wuhan, China), the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (Beijing, China), and Carleton University (Ottawa, Canada)
Gloria Yuan, Project Director, graduate of Beijing’s Jiaotong University, with more than ten years of teaching experience at Beijing University of Technology
Vincent Liu, graduate of Northeastern University (Shenyang, China), Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics (China), and Carleton University (Ottawa, Canada).
If efforts and resources are not maximized, students will fail to achieve their goals. Studying abroad is an opportunity to demonstrate one’s talent, but it is crucial to determine the direction and objectives of study prior to departure. During studies, students should maintain good interpersonal relationships, self-confidence, and a healthy attitude towards life. Resources should be used to foster competitiveness in pursuit of self-affirmation and success. To this end, OISEP provides a full-service package including professional guidance on planning a program of study; preparation for language training or individual counseling; regular meetings with students to discuss their progress, and regular communication with parents. In accordance with Canada’s new policy, students who have completed their studies can apply for a three-year work visa. Accumulation of more than one year of work experience can allow students to apply for permanent resident status in Canada. In addition to the above mentioned services, OISEP helps students to extend their study permit and to apply for work visas, immigration, and employment support.