Imagine immersing yourself in campus life in the heart of a bustling city - at a university that offers opportunities to spend a summer or semester overseas.
You can experience this at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU), a tertiary institute that emphasises the practical application of knowledge, with guaranteed internship and overseas study opportunities.
Located in downtown Hong Kong in the Hung Hom district, PolyU is the largest publicly funded university in the city with more than 28,000 students.
Although it was only established as a full university in 1994, it is ranked 106th in the QS World University Rankings 2019 and 7th in QS Top 50 under 50 2019.
Here are some highlights of what you can expect when studying at PolyU.
PolyU offers over 50 degree programmes at the undergraduate level, including programmes in Hospitality and Leisure Management (3rd), Civil and Structural Engineering (10th) and Business and Management studies (39th) in QS World University Rankings by Subject 2018 respectively.
The university is equipped with world-class facilities such as more than 40 research centres, laboratories and facilities.
These include a library with more than 1.2 million books and three million e-books, a sports complex and swimming pool. Students enjoy full Wi-Fi coverage on campus, with more than 20,000 Wi-Fi access points off-campus.
Ms Elizabeth Lee, 23, a Singaporean undergraduate who is in her fourth year of the Bachelor of Business Administration (Honours) in Marketing programme, says: "PolyU has given me so many opportunities to learn. The environment is conducive for learning and the lecturers fully support the student's learning in every possible way."
In line with its emphasis on applying knowledge in a practical way, PolyU has a mandatory Work-Integrated Education component in each undergraduate degree programme for students to gain maximum benefit from work to boost soft and hard skills during their time at university.
Click here for a full list of undergraduate courses available for international students.
Gain overseas exposure
One of PolyU's strengths is the overseas exposure that it offers students. It has more than 230 exchange partners across 37 countries and regions.
"What I like most about PolyU is that every academic year, there are multiple chances for students to go abroad for overseas exposure," says Ms Lee.
She participated in a homestay with a local family in Inner Mongolia for 10 days last year as part of a service learning trip, and had a six-month exchange earlier this year at Lund University in Sweden.
"Financial support is also given to international students. PolyU understands the importance of nurturing global students and takes overseas immersion programmes seriously," she adds.
In terms of financial assistance, PolyU subsidises up to 50 per cent of travel, accommodation and subsistence costs for international students. Students can get up to HKD50,000 (S$8,813) subsidy for attending Summer programmes from the University of Oxford or University of Cambridge.
For those who aspire to participate in international competitions and conferences, PolyU also provides a subsidy of up to two-thirds of the expenses needed (flight, accommodation and participation fees only).
Various other funding schemes are also available, including the Undergraduate Summer Research Abroad Sponsorship, and the International Competition & Conference Participation Scheme.
The latter encourages full-time undergraduates to participate in international competitions and conferences.
Click here for more details.
University should be about more than academics - and PolyU offers a vibrant campus life.
There are more than 40 clubs and associations to choose from, including Chinese Orchestra, the Astronomy Club, the Archery Club and Social Service Group.
If you are fluent in English, Cantonese and Mandarin, you can apply to be a PolyU Student Ambassador to promote the school to the general public. This is a great opportunity to meet new people, and enhance your leadership, communication and social skills. Bond and make other international students feel right at home by participating in the Global Student Ambassador Programme, formed by international students like yourself.
Mr Bob See, 23, a Singaporean undergraduate in his second year of the Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Product Design programme, says: "The liveliness of the student associations makes the school more than just a place to learn, but to make friends and more."
In addition, PolyU organises talks, seminars and career fairs regularly, providing opportunities for students to meet and network with representatives from various companies.
Score a scholarship
Full-time undergraduate programmes at PolyU for the 2019-2020 academic year cost HK$140,000 per annum.
International students can apply for scholarships based on academic merit or non-academic achievements. The maximum entry scholarship of HKD180,000 available to non-local students is equivalent to the waiver of the full HKD140,000 tuition fee plus HKD40,000 living subsidy. It is renewable subject to academic attainment.
Click here for more details.
Have your needs taken care of
If you are an international student, you can have a home away from home at one of PolyU's Halls of Residence.
You will be eligible to stay in housing managed by the university, including both Student Halls and off-campus residences, during the first two years of your studies.
Meet and socialise with other students as you participate in sports, games, open mics, cookouts, charity events, and more with people of various nationalities.
Adds Mr See: "My classmates are a diverse group. They hail from many countries, and all have different perspectives that I can learn from."
If this is your first time living overseas, don't worry - PolyU's dedicated team of Hall Wardens, Tutors, and staff members from the Office of Student Resources and Residential Life will be on hand to provide guidance and support.
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