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寻找更美好的未来

2017-09-26 17:08英语文摘 浏览:
An increasing number of midcareer Chinese are seeking greener pastures by furthering their studies overseas, but life has not been all fun and games for some of the spouses who have tagged along

For Zhang Dida, her new life in the United States is a stark contrast to the one she had back in Shanghai where she was constantly bogged down with work.

One of the many Chinese citizens who hold onto the F-2 dependent visa, meant for spouses and children of F-1 student visa holders, Zhang was presented with the opportunity to take over her family business but decided that she would instead follow her husband, who wanted to pursue a master's degree in Business Administration at Boston University. The couple arrived in the US city last August.

Zhang says that she is now able to enjoy a slower pace of life which has allowed her to spend more time doing what she is fond of. She has taken up English lessons, joined a dance team, cooked for her church members and participated in volunteering work. She and her husband are also expecting a baby in August.

"I wanted to show support for my husband who was keen to further his studies in order to secure a promising future for us, and that's why I decided to come and start a new life," says the 29-year-old.

"It is actually quite common to see fellow Chinese walking through the campuses in the US, which is the top choice of my husband and his course mates who harbor strong ambitions to achieve more in life."

Her husband is planning to find a job in the US following the completion of his studies and Zhang says that she is also contemplating whether to follow in his footsteps.

"My dream would be to stay home and raise the kids while my husband holds onto a stable job. He could drive us out of the city for short trips on weekends and we will also adopt a dog and let it be a companion for our children," says Zhang.

Over in Texas, Vincent Ye's five years in the country has been filled with more pressure than excitement. Ye has resorted to being a driving trainer in the day and a restaurant waiter at night as his wife is still a PhD student in traditional medicine.

F-2 visa holders are only eligible for enrollment in vocational or recreational courses and are prohibited from working in the country.

Ye and his wife plan to settle in the US and will start looking for jobs after the latter graduates later this year.

"We're different from other F-2 visa holders, most of whom are supported financially by their families in China and don't have to worry much about living expenses. We have to rely on ourselves," says Ye, who used to be a music teacher at a middle school in Hubei province.

"The hard times we have to go through now will all be worthwhile when we finally obtain the work permits and gain permanent residency. When that happens our life will back on track. That's our American dream, and we believe it will come true very soon."

But not every Chinese F-2 visa holder in the US is like Zhang or Ye. Wu Jing, who has been in Los Angeles, California, for two years, grew bored of her new life after just six months.

"I still cannot stand being a housewife who is stuck at home. I need to work to keep myself occupied," said the 27-year-old, who used to sell jewelry in Zhengzhou, Henan province, before following her husband to Los Angeles in 2014.

Wu said that she has firmly refused to get pregnant during their stay in the US and wants to pursue an MBA as well. She believes that they will return to China within two years.

"I don't want to waste my time here, so I'm now writing for my friend's magazine in China and I aim to obtain a postgraduate degree by the time my husband earns enough working experience and return to China," says Wu.

"I will return to China to be a working wife and mother very soon. That's for sure."

According to the statistics released by China's Ministry of Education, there were 523,700 overseas Chinese students in 2015, an increase of 63,900 from the year before. China Education Online, an online education service platform, also revealed that China was in 2015 the largest supplier of students to six Western countries and regions - the US, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Australia and Canada.

"More spouses are now holding onto dependent visas as an increasing number of Chinese people are furthering their studies after obtaining between three and five years of working experience," says Lu Hanlong, a professor at the Institute of Sociology under the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences.

"Regardless of their experiences abroad, these people simply want to find better jobs with higher salaries. They are just working toward a more promising future far away from their home country."

But while some may argue that the increasing numbers of people choosing to further their studies abroad suggests a brain drain in China, overseas educational counseling service provider EIC Education expects that the number of returnees will hit its peak within five years, primarily because many Chinese still view their homeland as one of the most promising markets in the world that is filled with opportunities.

Furthermore, the Chinese government has in recent years launched a slew of beneficial policies that have created better entrepreneurial environments to attract Chinese talents to return and contribute to the local economy. 同济大学公众号

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