eduFair Employee Spotlight: Luying Chen – World Traveler and International Education Expert
At eduFair, our staff is dedicated to helping Chinese students find and connect with their best-fit international institution. With our Employee Spotlight series, our goal is to introduce you to the people carrying out our mission. In our first spotlight, we introduced Derrik Karst, our Director of International Engagement. For our second spotlight, we’ll introduce you to Luying Chen, our Project Director.
Luying is passionate about education and traveling the world. At eduFair, she coordinates with multiple teams to improve eduFair’s platform to improve the student experience. She says that her mother’s career inspired her own career in education from a young age: “I would like to pursue my career in education, I think this is because of the influence of my mom. She is working at Zhejiang university. As a kid from my childhood, I liked this environment and I saw my mom achieve a lot of satisfaction in what she did.”
1. About Luying: Learning About the World Through Travel and Food
2. Q&A: Reflections on International Education and eduFair
About Luying: Learning About the World Through Travel and Food
Luying grew up in Hangzhou, China, where she continues to work with eduFair. Before her time with eduFair, she lived in New Zealand while pursuing her Bachelor’s degree in Human Resource Management. Luying knew she wanted to continue studying abroad for her master’s degree, and she did extensive research to choose her next location, the UK: “Study abroad is very broad thinking, so based on research you narrow down your mind. For example, for me when I applied for my master’s, I did some research and finally, I chose to study in the UK, and once I made that decision, I started to do some research on UK universities and select the majors that I’m applying for.” She spent a year in the UK, where she studied for her Master's in Advanced Management Practice and completed an internship.
Luying’s passion for travel and experiencing the world not only led her to study abroad, but also inspired her career in ed tech, where should could help other students reach their international education goals. However, travel isn’t the only way to learn about other cultures. Luying continues to experience different cultures through her passion for cooking and trying new food: “[Cooking]’s also a way to learn different cultures, cause when I am inspired by some cuisine, I’ll do some research and maybe learn some history or stories behind [it…] I’m very open to different kinds of foods, so sometimes I just make Chinese food, Japanese food, Korean food, Spanish tapas, French cuisine, Italian, etc.”
Not only does Luying enjoy cooking to try new foods and learn about different cultures, but it’s a way to relax after work. “Cooking and baking are pretty relaxing, so when I’m in the kitchen, I just shut off my mind from all the work stuff. I turn on my Bluetooth speaker and listen to the music, [like] pop music and light jazz.” Everyone needs a break, and cooking and listening to music is one way that Luying takes time for herself to relax.
Luying also enjoys spending time with friends and sharing delicious dishes: “Food is easy to share with friends and strangers too.” Sharing food, like sharing stories from travels, is a great way to share new and unique experiences with friends to inspire each other to continue trying new things. Luying is always learning and experiencing new things, and the next journey sometimes happens right in her own kitchen.
Q&A: Reflections on International Education and eduFair
1. What is your job with eduFair and what do you do in a typical workday?
“Every day I have different tasks, but my main tasks are to coordinate with different departments and then talk with them about their needs for some improvements on the platform. I collect those needs, analyze them, and share them with my department or team, and we come up with a conclusion. Then we need to make some detailed documents to share with the development team. So, I write up proposals and do research to analyze the feasibility of certain features. [For example,] since the pandemic, we generated a new section for institutions overseas and local agents so they can post related articles to share with students about Covid. Feedback from institutions was very positive.”
2. How did your experiences abroad impact your work with eduFair?
“At the beginning when I shared ideas with Andrew on how we could set up different sections on our platform, we went through the different steps from my application experience and my overseas study experience. I chose DIY to do the application for my master’s degree because that presents a personal experience. In general, it was positive, but many students experience some difficult times, so I did research and learned some stories from those different kinds of situations.” Luying learned from her personal experiences as well as other students’ stories to propose ideas for eduFair’s platform. Then she and Andrew “reached the conclusion and decided how we would divide [the platform] into the different sections and the content.”
3. How has eduFair helped you reach your professional goals?
For Luying, working with eduFair is a “great opportunity because it’s a start-up, and I’m the first person to work with Andrew, and we started this platform. I’ve seen the growth of the platform until now, from a little idea and then we expanded and expanded until now. It’s a huge platform and we still need to improve and integrate with the recent technology to bring students more benefits regarding overseas study.”
When asked about her goals, Luying said, “I think my future goals for eduFair is to try to build up the first comprehensive overseas platform for Chinese students, so our target isn’t just mainland China but Chinese-speaking users to help them to go study abroad more conveniently. That’s the main purpose of how we designed the platform. We’d like to share very transparent information with students so they can decide if they want to find an agent to help them or if they should do DIY for their applications.”
4. Why is international education important to you?
Luying explained that her time abroad had a large impact on who she is today: “I would say with my experiences of living, studying, and working in New Zealand and the UK, I've benefited a lot from my international experience. It is not only about what you've learned from the academic knowledge at schools, it is more about the unique personal experiences that broaden your outlook.” She emphasized that making friends with people from different cultural backgrounds played a big role in broadening her outlook, making her the person and international education expert that she is today. With Luying’s international outlook and passion for continuous learning, anything is possible.
Thanks for reading our Spotlight!
We hope you enjoyed this Spotlight. To hear more from our dedicated employees, check out our first Spotlight piece, an interview with eduFair’s Director of International Engagement, Derrik Karst, who is passionate about using technology to bridge students, schools, and opportunities all around the world.
ABOUT EDUFAIR CHINA
eduFair China is a free website and app connecting Chinese students with international institutions and first-hand resources about studying abroad. We aim to give students a more empowered approach to international education so that they can succeed during their journey abroad.
Our platform features more than 1,200 organizations and reaches millions of students across China.
Click here to learn more about getting your institution online and how eduFair can help you reach students in China.