Coordinated by the Embassy of Canada in Beijing, and with support from the International Education Division of Global Affairs Canada and EduNova, the media tour took place in September.
Four Chinese journalists visited and met with representatives from universities, colleges and other education-related organisations in Ottawa, Québec City, Montréal and Halifax.
With Chinese students forming a significant proportion of Canada’s international student cohort, the Canadian Embassy hopes to raise the profile of Canadian education in China through this visit, and all the while showcase its strengths and advantages for international students.
The visit was especially timely given that Canada is being featured as the “country of honour” at this month’s China Education Expo (CEE), China’s largest education fair.
Giselle Wang, Public Diplomacy Officer within the education division of the Embassy of Canada in Beijing, told The PIE News, “China is by far Canada’s largest and fastest growing source market for international students, with more than 132,000 Chinese nationals studying in Canada in 2016, representing one-third of all international students on our campuses.”
Wang added, “Canada’s leadership in multiple industries, its multiculturalism and favourable immigration policy have offered students tremendous opportunities for development and a great place to study, work, invest, live and visit.”
“China is by far Canada’s largest and fastest growing source market for international students”
The four journalists also had the opportunity to take part in a roundtable discussion with representatives from the Canadian Consortium for International Education (CCIE), a network of five national associations – Universities Canada, Colleges and Institutes Canada, CAPS-i, CBIE, and Languages Canada.
Gonzalo Peralta, Executive Director of Languages Canada, which is also the chair association of the CCIE, underlined the importance of such encounters with members of the Chinese press corp:
“Communication [with China] is not as fluid as with European countries. They have their own communications and way of allowing information in. Working with Chinese agents, journalists and the Chinese government is therefore really important, because sometimes it isn’t as easy for Chinese students to get the information directly.”
Going forward, the Embassy of Canada in Beijing hope that the visit will help the four journalists to produce stories that highlight the ample opportunities in Canada:
“Ultimately, we hope that the Chinese public will gain a better understanding of and appreciation for Canadian education through these stories,” Wang affirmed.
The China Education Expo will be taking place from 21 to 22 October in Beijing. It will also take place in the cities of Chengdu (24 October), Guangzhou (26 October) and Shanghai (28 to 29 October).