BEIJING: Zhu Qianling, a graduate of Tianjin University of Science & Technology (TUST), has been working on her visa for Japan after receiving an offer from Chiba University earlier this month.
“Going to the university is a dream come true,” Zhu, 23, told Xinhua. “My parents are also supporting me.”
Zhu is among 13 from the school of foreign languages at TUST who plan to further their studies in Japan this year.
Despite the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011 and the ensuing nuclear accident in Fukushima, Japan is still a choice destination for many Chinese young people, and the number of Chinese students in Japan has held steady.
According to the latest report from Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO), there were 97,875 Chinese students studying in Japan as of May 1, 2013. They made up about 60 percent of the international student population.
Though the number of Chinese students in institutions of higher education declined about 5 percent from the previous year to 81,884, the number of Chinese students in Japanese language institutes grew more than 6 percent to 15,991, according to the report.
Zhu Pengxiao, dean of the school of Japanese at Tianjin Foreign Studies University (TJFSU), said Japanese colleges have attracted Chinese students because their educational system is more advanced.
Additionally, the depreciation of the Japanese yen against the yuan since late 2012 has made Japan financially more competitive as a destination, encouraging more Chinese families to send their children to the country, he said.
Zhu Pengxiao said a total of 85 students at TJFSU went to Japan for further study last year. “The figure for this year is not yet worked out, but I am confident it will be bigger than last year,” he said.
Most of these students choose to major in economics and law in Japanese colleges, according to Zhu Pengxiao, whose school boasts about 1,300 students who major in Japanese.
“They want to learn how the Japanese economy is working, as Japan is a big and developed economy,” said Zhu Pengxiao. “Law school is also a hot choice because there is demand for graduates who can grasp both Japanese and Chinese laws in cities including Tianjin, where Japanese companies are concentrated.”
While young people in China consider Japan a top choice for overseas study, China is also attracting more Japanese students. Latest statistics from the Chinese government showed that more than 21,000 Japanese students studied in China in 2012, about 3,000 more than the year before. According to Zhu Pengxiao, a total of 80 exchange students from Japanese universities are scheduled to visit TJFSU in August.
“They will study Chinese and learn about traditional culture in their two-week stay,” Zhu Pengxiao said, adding that the university received 60 Japanese students last summer.
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