Chinese opera actress painting her face backstage at JingJiang Theater on 15 December 2007 in Chengdu
Chinese opera actress painting her face backstage at JingJiang Theater, Chengdu. Photo ©

Jack.Q /

Applications are currently closed.

What's it about?

Are you still undecided on your plans after graduation? Spend eight weeks in China on our Generation UK autumn programme, learning Mandarin and gaining meaningful work experience that will look fantastic on your CV – all this while exploring some of China’s most fascinating cities.

Whether you’re looking to get a head-start on mastering the language or boost your career prospects by undertaking an internship in fields such as accounting, business, or marketing, Generation UK can help provide the funding for your trip and make sure you make the most of your time in China.

Am I eligible?

Applicants must be:

  • a UK citizen/EU home student
  • aged 18 years and above
  • currently enrolled full-time at a UK university or have graduated from a UK university within the past year
  • in receipt of or have received a Maintenance Grant from Student Finance or SAAS bursary for Scottish students during their university career 
  • not in receipt of any other Generation UK funding.

Are you ineligible? Check our other opportunities.

What's on offer?

The Generation UK autumn programme combines three weeks of intensive Mandarin language study at a leading university, followed by a five-week placement in an industry sector of your choice. 

This programme is designed to give you a good foundation in Chinese language and cross-cultural awareness, before undertaking your internship placement and using your newly acquired language skills to further your understanding of your sector choice in China. 

The internships are set up through our partnership with InternChina, and cover sectors including information technology, legal, marketing, accounting, engineering, pharmaceuticals, fashion, finance, hospitality and many more. 

Two programmes ran last autumn, one in Chengdu and one in Qingdao:

City Dates
Chengdu 16 October 2017 - 10 December 2017
Qingdao 16 October 2017 - 10 December 2017

How much funding will I receive?

Generation UK funding will cover all language classes, cultural activities, internship placement fees, accommodation and comprehensive travel insurance (a must), as well as your airport pick-up and dedicated support throughout your placement. 

You’ll need to budget for your day-to-day expenses, which largely depend on where you’re living and your own lifestyle. Previous interns have been comfortable on the equivalent of about £50 a week, but it’s entirely up to you. You’ll also need to pay for your flights, visa and any other expenses related to your travel.

Why should I apply?

  • With 1.4 billion speakers worldwide, Chinese truly is a global language. Graduates who speak more than one language are highly sought-after, and with China’s increasing role in the world market, Mandarin is becoming a favourite among employers. 
  • Experience in China is increasingly valued by employers. Work experience in China will give you an inside view into Chinese culture and business practice, making you aware of cultural differences and similarities between China and the UK.
  • China may soon overtake the USA as the world’s largest economy. Knowledge of Mandarin and a connection with China will improve your career prospects.
  • Globalisation causes the job market-place to become more and more competitive. Your experience and understanding of China will make your CV stand out from the crowd.
There were two programmes last autumn, one in Chengdu (pictured) and one in Qingdao. Photo ©

bljbbk, licenced under CC0 1.0 and adapted from the original

Do I need to speak Mandarin?

You don’t need to have any prior Chinese language skills to take part in this programme, but we would advise doing your best to learn a few of the basics before you depart. All language classes are aimed at complete beginners or learners with basic-level Chinese, and will be taught primarily in English. Classes will not be suitable for more advanced learners.

During your internship, all your assignments will be in English and you’ll also be given an English-speaking supervisor to support and manage you on your placement.

How do I apply?

Apply for the Qingdao and Chengdu programme via InternChina.

Applications are now closed.

There are 30 spots up for grabs this autumn. Placements are very limited and in high demand. The sooner you can get your application in, the better. 

Make sure you have the following documentation ready, which you will need to submit during the application process:

  • Passport scan
  • Proof of Maintenance Grant receipt (scanned copy of original)
  • Most recent grade transcript (2015/16 academic year/degree certificate if graduated)
  • Academic Reference (needs to be on university letterhead paper and signed by the author)
  • Curriculum Vitae 

All shortlisted candidates will be invited to a short telephone interview, where the following criteria will be taken into account:

  • Academic achievement
  • Interest in chosen industry
  • Motivations for gaining work experience in China
  • Knowledge of Mandarin is not a pre-requisite.

Who do I contact, if I have questions?

You can send an email to the Generation UK team, who will be happy to help.

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