Let me be honest. Had I been given a list of countries and was asked where I wanted to move to for a year, China would not have been my first choice. Or my second. In fact, it took me a while to figure out, if I really wanted to go.
Moving to China is definitely outside my comfort zone.
But I have learned two valuable lessons in the past:
#1 Whenever I push the boundaries of my comfort zone, amazing things tend to happen.
#2 Nothing ever turns out the way you expected it anyway.
Trusting in these life lessons and following my belief that everything is gonna be fine (or even better), I will be moving to Shanghai in a little more than 3 months. This opportunity I was granted, could almost not have been greater. Not only will I be allowed to study in a foreign country for yet another year, but I will also be part of a double degree programm, which means that I am enabled to receive two (instead of one) Master degrees in two years. I am also honoured to be accepted to study at Fudan University, which is one of China’s most prestigious universities.
With respect to my career plans, I expect this to be an extraordinary experience, too. By far not only because of what it adds to my CV. The greatest benefit about it for me is, that I will get to live in a culture that I am not at all familiar with yet. This gives me the opportunity to find out – really honestly – if I want to go through with my plan of a career in international politics and diplomacy where I would have to be willing to live wherever in this world. I hope that this next step will once more help to open my mind – this process, my dear friends, will never end. I don’t believe there is a finite open mind.
So here I go again. Making my way through piles of paper work, hoping that in the end everything will work out.
By now I believe every institution I’m in contact with is getting suspicious – for instance, it is not going to be easy to explain to the Chinese embassy in Washington DC, why a German citizen residing in DC and/or Göteborg is applying for a visum to be sent by a Swedish university to a Chinese one. But there’s not always a blue print for life.
Make use of the opportunities life is granting you. Even the small ones. Notice them, appreciate them.