Aaron Lu: Be Open-minded, Learn to Embrace at NTU!

Aaron was born and raised in Chiayi. He obtained his bachelor’s degree at National Chi-Nan University with major in Foreign Language (English & Japanese) and minoring in International Business. Soon after completing bachelor’s degree, Aaron took his first job and worked for a pump manufacturer (Stairs Pumps) based in Chiayi. He was a salesperson dealing with customers from abroad (mainly from Central and South Asia). The next year, he relocated to Kaohsiung and started working for China Airlines, where he has been and is working through the years of his studies.

*Aaron (Second to the right) and NTU teammates in Spain

“I had worked for three years before working on my master’s degree in NSYSU. The reason I chose GHRM program was quite simple-it enables me to obtain another master’s degree in the UK at minimum cost. Nevertheless, GHRM program granted me much more than that! I met a bunch of people who inspired me a lot either in the academic field or personal life. Moreover, it enabled me to bridge the three-year gap (during which I stopped studying) with up-to-date skills as well as hands-on experiences in HRM field. Besides, I found it undoubtedly a great place to study thanks to its diverse environment (foreign lecturers and students, international programs, and abundance of academic resources).” – explains Aaron.

Aaron has just finished his studies at NTU, and he is very excited about his experience: “It was amaaaazing!!! As a Taiwanese student, I would say I hardly know what a master course is truly like until I set foot in NTU. However, studying at NTU would not make any differences if you do not keep an open mind. The fact is that you could learn much more than you expected once you get out of your comfort zone and start a discussion with someone you are not familiar with. Overall, I had countless unforgettable life experiences in the UK and my master study would not be completed without them.”

During his first year at NSYSU Aaron really enjoyed the “Independent Studies” class instructed by professor David McConville, as the opportunity to work closely with an operating business as a HR consultant is very valuable. 

“I had difficulties adapting to new technologies widely used by other students at first. For example, I could not use Google to create documents for group editing as I usually made slides on my laptop. Fortunately, my teammates taught me how to do it later. Time management is a common issue for most of the students in this program since if we want to graduate on time, we may have to take at least 3 to 4 courses each semester while most of them are quite demanding. From scheduling, prioritizing, to letting go is the process I used to deal with my time. I planned my school schedule based on my work roaster and prioritized the school tasks based on their deadlines. And letting go was sometimes inevitable when things went beyond my control.” – these are the challenges Aaron faced and successfully dealt with being part of GHRM MBA Program.

After graduating from GHRM English MBA Program, Aaron thinks with the Diploma in HRM, it would be easier to get a position in the HR department via internal transfer in his current company. Similarly, he is convinced that students with this diploma will be able to find a decent job thanks to NSYSU's reputation in industry as well as in research.

The following are some facts and tips for the new blood (from Aaron):

(1) You would learn mostly by yourself and a lot from your peers. 

(2) If you are highly interested in HRM or your main purpose of study is to explore it, taking courses across programs would be suggested.

(3) Communication comes first in every social context. Sharpening your language skills would make your study more fruitful.

(4) Setting short, medium, and long-term action plans (as required to state in the study plan) would help clarify your initial purpose of the study, track the progression during the study, and review the takeaways in the end of the study.

(5) Always be positive and prepared for shocks, challenges, and failures as they would help you grow.

Dual Degree of NSYSU + NTU = Fantastic Life Experience



謝依儒 (Lulu) from Miaoli, Taiwan would like to tell about herself and share her experience of being a dual degree program participant. She is currently first year student of NSYSU GHRM program and a dual degree exchange student at Nottingham Trent University.

She likes to travel and meet new people, discover new cultures as well as both gain and share experience. Lulu likes NSYSU for its friendly atmosphere and very supportive, caring Professors and staff, who are willing to help in solving any kind of problem and answer any question.

Meanwhile, Lulu enjoys her student life at Nottingham Trent University - full of academic discoveries and new approaches combining it with experience of meeting people from all over the world (more than 80% of students in her class are international students) and exploring Europe - she already had a great chance to visit some of the European countries while participating in internship program.

“NTU has a fabulous learning environment. Enjoy your time here and don’t hesitate to apply for dual degree program, it will be the most fantastic experience in your life” – Lulu advises to NSYSU students.

Lulu would like to encourage students, whose native language is not English, not to be afraid, and challenge themselves to speak and practice as much as possible even if it is not very easy to express yourself at the beginning you will start to feel the language and the words will just flow.

The same advice could be given to international students, who came to Taiwan and started learning Chinese. Although Chinese is not that easy for reading and writing but our speaking is quite easy without complex grammar. Chinese is full of our culture content so it is a way to learn local culture” explains Lulu.

“More possibilities ahead!” Grace Kuo in Nottingham

  2017年初,Grace 郭芳瑜(左)收拾好行李,帶著在GHRM一年半的經驗前往英國諾丁罕,準備攻讀Nottingham Trent University的國際企業管理 (International Business) MSc學位。Grace坦言其實本來沒想過申請雙學位,但因交換學校的志願排序結果不理想,轉而覺得GHRM提供的雙學位機會既可以作為出國交換的畢業標準,又可以取得英國學位,「一石二鳥,何樂而不為呢?」她笑說。

  在Nottingham Trent University的雙學位計劃中,學生可以選擇兩種不同的課程路線,喜歡發想的Grace選擇了Innovation Route。 在英國,上課的方式跟在台灣很不一樣,路線中的每個課程以密集班的形式,在一段時間集中上課,「那邊課業其實不輕,雖然集中上課很好吸收,但一段時間後就很像被作業跟資訊追著跑。」Grace也順帶點出了時間規劃的重要性,為了取得學位,自然不能像交換一樣自在玩樂,但也因為課業壓力大,學習到有效率的自我管理。

  對選擇碩二下才進行海外學期的Grace來說,論文也是不能忽視的重點。由於二年級上學期待在台灣,論文已經有一定的進度,為了配合英國的課程,同時也繼續撰寫論文,Grace需要付出更多的心力與身在台灣的指導教授保持聯繫,另外,Nottingham Trent也會指派一位老師針對論文做輔導,讓她持續維持進度。


  最後想對未來計畫申請英國雙學位的同學說什麼呢?Grace建議提早開始找實習,Nottingham Trent的雙學位計畫規定在學期後需要有12週的實習經驗方可取得學位,但英國找實習大不易,如果在英國找不到實習,可以往其他國家發展,但學校方不建議在自己的母國實習。「在得知獲選的時候就可以趕快開始丟履歷了,才不會最後急得像熱鍋上的螞蟻!」

  Nottingham Trent的經驗對Grace來說是意外的收穫,因為本來研究人力資源,Grace原先計劃在畢業之後尋求HR的職缺,「到了英國之後,我覺得自己多了更多可能。」

不再限制自己,自由展翅!More possibilities ahead!

Spring, 2017, after one and a half year in GHRM, Grace Kuo (left) packed her belongings and headed to Nottingham Trent University, United Kingdom, ready for her dual degree studies in International Business MSc. Grace had never thought she would apply for the dual degree program, but after the result announcement of exchange studies, she decided to apply for the dual degree program in the UK and fulfill the graduation requirement at the same time. “It’s two birds with one stone. Why not?” She said.

With the dual degree program at Nottingham Trent University, students are able to choose between two course routes, and Grace, who has tons of ideas, chose the innovation route. The way of how semesters roll in the UK is very different from how things go in Taiwan. All courses in each route are taught in “blocks”, in other words, one course in a period, intensively. “The loading of the studies there is actually heavy, although, with blocks, it is more efficient to absorb the information. After some time, it kind of feels like you're caught up with all the assignments and information load.” Grace brought up the importance of organizing time. To successfully get the degree, one can not enjoy themselves as if they are only doing a semester abroad, but with the heavy loading of studies, she improved self-management effectively and efficiently.

To Grace, who chose to go abroad during the second semester of her senior year, making progress on her thesis is one of the most important objectives. Without going on exchanging during the 3rd semester, Grace had already completed a part of her research, but to work with the schedule in Nottingham, she had to keep in contact with her thesis advisor in Taiwan despite the time difference. Furthermore, Nottingham Trent usually assigns a supervisor to each student to oversee their progress of theses.

“The expenses in the UK is something one should pay attention to. A well-organized financial plan can be helpful.” Most local students support themselves with their part-time jobs, but if one is not planning to seek for part-time jobs, it is important to think thoroughly about how one can support themselves financially, in assuring the effectiveness of the studies while living abroad. Grace decided to cook by herself several days in a week, but for people who are not comfortable in kitchens, they can always go to the all-you-can-eat restaurants around the campus to let out their student instincts, eating!

Final suggestions to future dual degree students? Grace suggests some early preparations for international internships. In Nottingham Trent, it is required that students perform a 12-week internship outside of their home countries. “Finding internships in the UK is more difficult than expected. You can most definitely start to send out CVs right after getting nominated for the dual degree program.”

The experience in Nottingham Trent University is a windfall to Grace. She planned to seek for opportunities in the HR field due to her studies in Taiwan. “After my studies in the UK, I think there more opportunities ahead!” she smiles with ease, not limiting herself anymore.