Back to School in China

UCF alumnus Max Hoffman graduated from the political science department in Spring 2014 – just a year and a half into his collegiate career. Hoffman had his sights set on something else: Shanghai.

Hoffman accepted a position as a leader of the foreign teachers at Shanghai Bestway EDU where he teaches English and handles curriculum issues and cultural ideas between foreign teachers and Chinese superiors. This position has helped him prepare for his next step at Fudan University, where he will be studying for his Master of Arts in Chinese Society and Public Policy, beginning this fall.

“I have learned both the cultural and political impacts China has to offer through the world,” he said. “I have also been learning and speaking Mandarin in addition to Korean and Japanese through my experience in the Asian market.”

Hoffman received a full scholarship from the Chinese Government to attend Fudan, and a majority of his classes will be taught in English. While attending school in China is similar to the United States, Hoffman isn’t exactly sure what to expect.

“It’s based off of similar curricular rules and expectations for courses and theses based on original research work,” he said. “There are professors that come from all over the world to teach students their beliefs and experiences of both China along with the rest of the world.”

In his short time at UCF, Hoffman was actively involved in a few campus clubs and associations including UCF UNICEF, United Nations Association, UCF College Republicans and the Intramural Basketball Team. He interned for Senator Marco Rubio in the fall of 2013 and worked as a liaison between Sen. Rubio and his constituents. He was responsible for helping staff members, attending meetings and writing and organizing messages related to policy announcements. Hoffman credits this for his career success, and the time his professors spent with him.

“UCF is such a great school with such wonderful opportunities to learn and obtain a good career after graduation,” he said. “Definitely take advantage of the opportunities UCF has in store because you never know what remarkable career path you might embark upon.”

For Hoffman, it’s China. He says it’s been an amazing experience and is interested in the Chinese government and how the nation is constantly changing.

“The Chinese people are very friendly and open to foreigners from different parts of the world,” he said. “Landmarks include the Great Wall of China, the Forbidden City, the Pearl Oriental Tower, the Shanghai Tower, the China Art Museum… and the list goes on. This is what people need to experience when visiting China.”

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