My name is Xixi, I major in fashion and textile and I am currently completing my semester abroad at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University.
My time in Hong Kong is coming to an end and I can’t help it but to feel upset because I will miss this beautiful city and everyone that I’ve met and befriended along the way. Although it has only been a short few months, this journey has definitely has enriched my understanding on life and opened me up to a lot more opportunities within the fashion and entertainment industry.
Life in Hong Kong is very different to Australia in terms of cultures and customs. What’s special about Hong Kong is that you get to experience the fusion between the cultures of the east and west, as contrast between the old and the new; it is the modern and well developed business/fashion central of China but this bustling little city still maintains strict tradition dating back thousands of years.
The student life in Hong Kong is also fairly different to UTS. Poly U have a lot more societies and functions compared to UTS, especially for those who lives in the student halls. A little note – make sure you stay at the student accommodation provided because this way, you get to experience the ‘exchange’ life to the fullest and it’s also very cheap!
The student accommodation (Hung Hom Halls) provided is a ten mins walk away from campus and the optimum location to explore Hong Kong as it is close to key areas. The facilities in the halls are amazing, they have a printing room, study room, dance room, games room, swimming pool, gym, table tennis tables and a canteen. As for the dorms, every dorm has two beds, tables, a fridge and a bathroom to share with your suit mates.
The hall life is great fun because local students will constantly invite us to functions and gatherings such as galas, festivals, hall dinners and so on. We (all the exchange students) will also come together and plan short getaways, night outs and hikes for example, a small bunch of us went to Korea for Seoul fashion week !
Tutorials & Facilities
As a fashion student I fell in love with the courses they offer here. Their fashion course is divided into 5 streams which includes fashion business, intimate apparel, fashion production, fashion design (knit or woven) and textiles design, and being an exchange student, you get the advantage to explore any courses you like within these 5 streams. The facilities here are amazing! There’s a knitting lab, weaving lab, sewing machine room, textiles lab, printing and dying lab – in short they have everything here you need under one roof! The tutors here are also very lenient with exchange students so uni life here is pretty chilled.
Hong Kong being one of the largest fashion centrals in China gives you a lot of opportunities to meet industry professionals. What’s good about networking in Hong Kong is that industry professionals are happy to help and perhaps pass your resume on to other professionals which could hook you up with jobs and small internships. I have been fortunate enough to meet someone who works for a magazine and because of him I got a styling position for an issue in May. Another way to meet professionals is to talk to your tutors. All the tutors at PolyU have a lot of connections within the fashion industry so if you talk to them and show them your interest, they may give you some contacts and possibly get you an internship as well.
Overall, I hope this blog post gave you an insight on my journey as an exchange student in Hong Kong and hopefully sparks your interest to do a semester aboard.
Bachelor of Design in Fashion and Textiles
The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Australian Government New Colombo Plan Mobility Grant recipient.