In China it is no coincidence that 80% of all children are wearing eye glasses by the age of 12 years. The life of a Chinese student is one of endless study from the age they can read. Many forfeit their entire childhoods just to be “properly prepared” for that dreaded Dragon that awakens every September just long enough to devour the dreams of a few million high school kids, and then goes back into hibernation for another year. In China they call that voracious dragon “Gao Kao”. It is their annual version of the college entrance exam. For those who score in the top 20% of the Gao Kou their careers are guaranteed as they will win entrance into one of China’s top ten universities. For the other 80% they will grope and scramble to pick up the pieces of their suddenly shattered dreams.
But wait… if you have money, you can buy a solution to this horrible problem! Those sharing this “good news” appear to be saviors to both the students and their parents. But who are they? Basically millionaires who less than five years ago were only English teachers with an idea. Recognizing that university enrollments were way down in the west due the sick western economies, they seized upon the opportunity to cash in at both ends. They would become official and unofficial agents for the universities abroad and become “career counselors” back in China where they would hold free workshops and seminars at various high schools and sell hope. Hope to study abroad is not cheap, but it always comes with some “guarantee”. For example BOSSA, a study abroad company located near Sanyuanqiao guarantees to get a Chinese student into a top 100 university in America, the U.K. or Canada for 50,000 yuan. And if they fail? They guarantee to “try” again. Oxbridge is yet another such hope peddler only they have franchised their operations to ten locations throughout China. The CEO Anjing Lu is now reported to be worth close to a billion dollars. But in reality they are just selling false hope to the desperate students with promises that go like this… “You can study at the famous Sheffield University in the U.K. and when you graduate there will be dozens of great paying job offers to choose from and your U.K. residency will be guaranteed!” Sounds “promising” doesn’t it?
So much so in fact that this year over 500,000 of China’s high school graduates applied for enrollment abroad and were accepted! Great news right? Wrong. You see Chinese students are considered to be international students, and as such they must pay double the tuition rates that locals pay in the U.S., Australia, Canada, and the U.K. One year at Cornell University will cost a Chinese student over $60,000 USD when you factor in housing, meals, insurance, etc. And unlike China which graduates students in 3 years, the universities abroad run a 4 year program. So, a Chinese family will expend their entire life’s savings to send junior abroad to study. But with those great-paying jobs awaiting them upon graduation, it will all be worth it right? Wrong again.
You see now the first group of these kids have graduated and they have learned the cruel facts of western life. They have learned painful and expensive lessons in racism and IP paranoia. In economies that are struggling to stay afloat, local politicians abroad want every possible job to go to native citizens, not the Chinese graduate who is perceived as just another immigrant. It matters not how well-qualified the Chinese students are, nor how fluent their English may be. In fact, technology companies don’t want them coming abroad any more at all since the American government has accused 20% of them of being IP theft moles for the Chinese government.
This cycle of deception has bankrupted many Chinese families with their children coming home with the most expensive diplomas on Earth, but still with little hope of finding a a good job. Ying who doesn’t want us to use her last name graduated summa cum laude with her MBA from Cardiff University (a top ten university in the U.K.) and still could not find a job within her major. She spent no less than $78,000 on her MBA and sent out almost 300 resumes to receive two job offers as an assistant restaurant manager and a Metro safety inspector, both at minimum wage. Now back in Beijing she has to compete with even more young grads in an even tighter job market. She cannot hold back the tears as she murmurs “I failed my family”
Actually it was not at all Ying’s fault but rather ours, for turning a blind eye to all the “study abroad” frauds operating in China. All these “agents” and “recruiters” need to be shut down and let Universities from abroad come and do their own recruiting every year like they do everywhere else in the world. On average these sly middlemen add an extra cost of $20,000 to the already super expensive education abroad, and they do nothing more than than accept and process paperwork, although they will say otherwise. They are greedy and slimy bottom feeders that are exploiting China’s youth, and in our judgement only a pedophile is a creature more despicable.
Consider too that China’s growth cannot continue if deliberate brain drain is openly promoted by foreigners as well as local cheaters – only to make a fast buck. In fact, if more attention was focused on this problem, China would enjoy brain gain instead of brain drain. Just think about that for a moment and see if you do not also agree that enough is enough. An example needs to be made and the Procuriate is the one best positioned to set that example. Who are the offenders? There are many but Oxbridge and Beijing Aoji are the two biggest. But Bossa remains the most brazen and egregious by far. The youth of China are far more valuable than the guan xi of any businessman. Don’t you agree?
We publicly call upon the Ministers of Education and Ministers of Justice to stop the fraud and help restore the lost millions and dignity of over 2 million Chinese families taken in by this shameful ruse. Only a lucky few will prosper from their studies abroad and the rest will suffer not only monetary loss, but the humiliation of being duped twice. We also call upon the alumni associations of every university in America, Australia, Canada, and the U.K. to pressure your university to cease their willful complicity in this shameful scheme. The exploitation is real and it needs to stop. Further the government of China should not allow any recruiter to step foot on Chinese soil who does not agree to recruit Chinese students on the same terms and conditions as any other student in the world. Anything less is racial and commercial discrimination. If the Chinese government won’t protect China’s best investment in the future, who will? Hopefully these words will not fall upon deaf ears.