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Student story

Jessica Miao

20 July 2023

"UC is where I built my confidence and entrepreneurial spirit..."


Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication*

Founder and CEO, United Media Solution, Shanghai, China

CEO of United Media Solution (UMS) Jessica Miao kick-started her passion for communication at UC.

"I am the CEO of a digital marketing company with offices in China, New Zealand and Australia. I have a staff of more than 40 people so every day is busy."

UMS offers companies online media management, E-commerce, Chinese Social Media and other online media solutions. Her company represents numerous businesses including Vodafone, Air New Zealand and Mother Earth.

UC also played a particularly important role in the foundation of UMS, as Jessica met her two business partners while studying at the University. Sean Xie, UMS Chief Technology Officer, majored in Finance and Computer Science, and Richard Zhu, UMS Chief Financial Officer, majored in Finance and Accounting.

"I opted to take on the challenge of a Journalism and Mass Communication degree as I wanted to push myself beyond my comfort zone.

"As a young girl, I was fascinated by war correspondents and I thought journalism would be a really exciting and important career. I was also keen to study overseas to challenge myself to overcome the language barrier, and study a degree in a foreign language."

Jessica was eager to pursue an international education, and UC was the perfect fit.

"The UC lecturers were particularly conscious of international students and were very approachable and helpful – particularly with overcoming language barriers and grammar."

The University campus was a big draw card for Jessica. With open style facilities and large green spaces, it's a relaxing learning environment.

"I always wanted to attend a "proper" university with classic buildings and sprawling grounds. When I visited UC in the autumn I was captivated.

"New Zealand was known to be very open to international students, especially Chinese students."

Despite studying in a second language, she was able to navigate the initial confusion with the help of both lecturers and her peers.

"As I progressed through the course, my language skills improved and this was reflected in my grades."

"UC is where I built my confidence and entrepreneurial spirit, and these are the skills that guided me throughout my media degree and onwards into my career. Confidence and an entrepreneurial spirit is very important for anyone forging their career, but particularly for a start-up, to help you overcome the obstacles and difficulties you face developing and growing a business."

For those looking into studying Communications she advises to "put in the extra time and work as it is worth it".

"As a Chinese national, a lot of what I learned was completely new to me and it provided a fascinating learning experience. I felt honored to be studying journalism because it is a respected profession.

"Life at UC was very social, I made a lot of great friends that I am still close with now. Everyone at UC, including staff and students are very nice. Whenever you need help, people are very helpful. Also the food is really good and there's a lot of selection, which is very important to Chinese people!"

* Now Media and Communication.

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