Stay slim – Keep eating!

By Martin Florea

Twins Stefan and Martin Florea were exchange students from our partner, Goethe University, Frankfurt, in 2015. Here they share impressions of their time at CityU.

A number of things surprised me about Hong Kong. Firstly, the teaching methods at CityU are different from German universities where the focus rather lies on theoretical approaches. In contrast, CityU focuses a lot on group projects to foster social and team-working skills and I really liked this more hands-on approach, where I could learn a lot.

I was also surprised by how bureaucratic Hong Kong is. Although I come from Germany, which has a reputation for being bureaucratic, Hong Kong takes things to a new level! It started with the course selection, where I had to complete multiple forms, and continued at the airport where they did not let me onto my plane back to Germany at first because my carry-on baggage was too big. The exact size had to be measured.

I want to mention how much people enjoy eating. Although they all have very slim bodies, they see eating as a hobby and eat very extensively! I still remember how I was on the way to a dim sum restaurant with Hong Kong friends and how they complained about the short time that the table was reserved for us. In fact, the table was reserved for one and a half hours and they told me that they always need a lot of time when having dinner. Whereas it is common in Germany to order your complete meal before starting to eat, Hong Kongers order new dishes while they are eating, which might explain why they need more time for dinner.

Altogether, I am very grateful for my wonderful time at CityU and I think that everyone should visit Hong Kong at least once. It is a life-enhancing experience that I can only recommend.

Finally, we would both like to thank our home university, Goethe University in Frankfurt, Germany, for fostering students to pursue semesters abroad and for making our exchange semester possible. We would also like to thank Miss Ada Kwok, who facilitated our semester in Hong Kong enormously, as well as the Christa & Norbert Walter Foundation and the German Academic Exchange Service who supported our exchange endeavor.