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Bc. Juraj Vodička, Brno University of Technology, ročník 3

Faculty Faculty of Chemistry
Field of study Biotechnology (and Food Technology)
Field of internship Biological and Biomedical Sciences
Specialization of InternshipBiochemistry/Biophysics and Molecular Biology
Internship period (from - to) 17.7.2018 - 24.8.2018
Internship duration (weeks) 6
Transport (means, price) Flight from Vienna (direct - OS067)
Insurance/Insurance company Union
Visa/Work permit (yes/no) Yes
Price of Visa 190 HKD (cca 20 EUR, 530 CZK)
City of Internship Zobrazit místo na mapě  China - Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Internship reference number HK-2018-ABCT-02

About the country

Location of the place

Hong Kong is specially administered territory of China located on the southeast coast of the country.

City

City is spread on several islands and peninsulas, from which the most famous and active parts are Hong Kong Island and Kowloon.

Surroundings (possible trips, ...)

Hong Kong is a country full of natural countryside bordering with the urban area. It is really easy to get to the nature, but also get lost in the city to explore local culture, to see people, to feel life. This unique urban area is full of city parks flanked by skyscrapers and shopping malls, trees and statues, temples and churches.. and temples.. and temples.. and temples. Every place there is worthy to visit. It is also very close to China mainland and Macao, what offers wider possibilities of trips.

Employer

Employer

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Department of Applied Biology and Chemical Technology. The name of my supervisor was Dr. Yao Zhongping (he was very kind, but also very busy).

Work description

In general, mass spectrometry was my field of study. There were several directions of study suggested to me. I was asked to join one of the PhD students working under my supervisor. I chose one focusing on protein interactions, specifically interactions of one lactamase type and its inhibitor. I was suposed to provide an experiment, analyze the datas and present the results in a proper way.

Salary (sufficient for local conditions?)

6500 HKD per month (cca 670 EUR, 18 200 CZK) is not really sufficient for local prices. It will be your holiday, so prepare to spend a bit more than you earn (but this depends on your personal preferences - I could save more money, but sometimes I did, sometimes I did not want to). Moreover, you have to mind, that you will get your salary at the end of month, so do not forget to come with sufficient money for the begining. Nevermind, dont be shy to spend money, it is a holiday, as I said.

Language requirements

Not really advanced English required. High school English combined with some technical terms (commonly studied at your university) is enough for this purpose.
Not many people in public or services could speak English well (or even speak), but you can always deal with them and get what you want.

Accommodation (price, who provided it)

Accommodation is provided by university at its dorms. You will live on appartments with up to 8 another persons, that are devided into 4 rooms (3 x 2, 1 x 3). You will share two bathrooms (including toilet, sink and shower), another 3 separated sinks, one fridge and table with some chairs. Kitchen is common for whole floor, but its spacious. There is also one washing mashine, dryer mashine and iron for one floor.
Price for one night (day) is 88 HKD, which is equal to cca 9 EUR (cca 246 CZK).

Social life

Meeting IAESTE members (pick-up at the airport, organised events...)

IAESTE members usually collect trainees at the airport, but not everytime. I was not picked-up, I had to take a bus (A22 goes directly to Ho Man Tin, where the halls are) and it was really easy to get out from the airport. Everything is marked properly, in English. Another possibile form of transport from the airport is Airport Express (MTR), but I dont recommend this because it is more expensive and complicated (you have to change the line). Buy an Octopus card at the airport immediately and get on bus A22, get of at Valley Road or Pak Kung street station, where the IAESTE member wait for you for sure.
Members of IAESTE Hong Kong (or members of Hong Kong Caps) usually organise some dinners, lunches, little trips (not very often.. it is not necessary, all trips you will organise with another trainees). They are nice and kind. Main communication channel is Whatsapp (also with other trainees, they will set up a group for you).

Meeting other foreign students

You will spend whole time with another trainees (foreign students). Everywhere you go, you dont go alone. Every activity, trip, dinner, lunch (whatever you want) you can plan with another guys. Just use Whatsapp to let them know, what are your plans and you wont be alone.. Somebody always join you. There were about 50 other foreigners with me on my internship, so I spent every trip with another group. JUST USE WHATSAPP EVERYTIME!!

Sport and culture

Free gym at dorms (not so good one) and free table tennis.. and free sport facilities at campus (including outdoor swimming pool, tennis courts, badminton and squash courts, etc. Many opportunities to sport. There is also one great beach for surfing - big wave bay (dont be afraid of the name), you can borrow surf there for 40 HKG per one day and have a best fun ever (I recommend to wake up earlier and surf from 8 to 12, less people, better waves and weather conditions). YOU MUST TRY SURFING!!!
Culture is a chapter for guides and books. I highly recommend you to buy one (in English, not in maternal language) and read it or just simply go through it before arriving to HKG.

Food, local specialties

Local cousine is very variable. Prepare to taste unusual combinations, but never be afraid of trying. I have tried so many local specialties, that I could write my own guide.
Common cousine include noodles, rice and dim sum. Try Tim Ho Wan restaurant (first dim sum restaurant that recieved Michelin star for this kind of cousine, also cheapest Michelin star restaurant) and One Dim Sum restaurant. Also make a free time to search for Tak Fat Beef Balls restaurant (best noodles in soup ever).. its really difficult to find that restaurant and the envirnoment of the restaurant is awful, but its worth it!
The best culinary experience you will find in strange and sometimes repulsive places.. dont be afraid, just try!

Other information

Possibilites to communicate with the Czech Republic

Internet (at dorms, at uni.. eduroam wifi). Free wifi everywhere. Possibility to buy SIM card with internet (its is quite cheap).

Recommendations for students who will go to the same place

Visit as many places as you can. Dont avoid any attractions, trips and adventures. Explore, taste, try... feel.. live! (And do not forget trying surfing!!!)

What not to forget with you

Camera (worst mistake ever), guide, SUN PROTECTION and adapter to socket (same as one to british sockets).
Also dont forget some basic medicine (painkillers, etc.).. its a bit expensive there (I dont have an experience with that, but I have some references). They use AC a lot (its cold inside) everywhere, so take a hoodie and some drugs against sore throat. Also take an umbrella (or buy some there).

Benefits of the internship

I found a lot of new friends.. made friendships all over the world.
You will also experience working on a project (in better case on your own project) as PhD students do. This internship will definitely expand your experience, horizons, goals.. it will move you to another dimension of science.. it will provide you a new point of view. It will force you to live your life.

Cooperation with IAESTE in the foreign country

Without problems.

Overall experience with IAESTE

Great idea of providing internships.

Student's website

https://www.polyu.edu.hk/abct/en/home/index.html

Employer's webiste

https://www.polyu.edu.hk/abct/en/home/index.html

Other useful links

https://www.hko.gov.hk/contente.htm - My Observatory app recommended

Other comments

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