Nottingham gives students a head start in businessOverseas Education | Samuel Chan 16 Jul 2019
One of the best things about attending a UK university is the fact that you get far more than just a good degree.
As with British boarding schools, British universities always take a holistic approach to education.
Across the country, you will find that universities invest in a great range of disciplines beyond academia, from sports and culture to student entrepreneurial activity.
An interesting example is the University of Nottingham.
Situated in the middle of the UK, this has a particularly impressive offering for anyone who is interested in business as well as their chosen subject. In addition to being a high ranking university academically, and having a beautiful campus, Nottingham goes to great lengths to help its students get started in the intimidating world of business and to prepare for international careers.
Regular readers may be aware that I am an alumnus of this university. I studied here for several years and had a happy and productive time. I made great friends and added to my understanding of British culture, learning things that weren't a part of life in a boarding school - such as shopping for the week's food in the local supermarkets.
Of course, I am bound to think highly of an institution that helped me to get to where I am today.
But quite apart from my own personal opinion and experience, the impressive stats about this university speak for themselves. It isranked as a world top 100 university in the QS World University Rankings 2020.
In the UK, it is placed at No 16 by The Sunday Times. It is also a member of the Russell Group - a group of 24 leading UK universities that includes Oxford and Cambridge.
When it comes to preparing students for business, there is a very good economics school here but beyond the classroom, there is the Ingenuity Lab. As the name suggests, this is a place to experiment with business ideas and try your hand at things in a supportive environment.
As with any good laboratory, it has impressive facilities. These range from the basic - office spaces, meeting rooms, Wi-Fi and printing - to the more advanced, such as the opportunity to apply for a two-year visa that allows students to stay in the UK and work on their start-ups.
There is also the Nottingham Ingenuity Fund which aims to invest 1 million (HK$9.83 million) in student and alumni enterprise.
Currently, the Ingenuity Lab actually has more than 160 new or early stage start-ups that cover many sectors. These include beauty and makeup, education, food and nutrition, sports, IT/tech and medical artificial intelligence.
Apart from these obvious attractions, there is also something more subtle to be said for Nottingham: it is a true multinational university. The global student community can claim to have students from over 150 countries. Given the global nature of life today, this can only be a good thing. The earlier students can get used to working, communicating and socializing in a multinational, multicultural way, the better.
Nottingham is just one of many British universities that offer more than a great academic education and a reputation that looks impressive when you get back to Hong Kong. It's important to try and step out of the typical Hong Kong mind set and open up to a different way of viewing what an education should be and what a good boarding school, college or university can really do for you and your future.
If you're interested in the University of Nottingham there is still time to apply for 2019. You can visit their website at www.nottingham.ac.uk/ugstudy/clearing/international/index.aspx.
If you're thinking about studying in the UK in general, you can visit www.britannia-study.com