Haolun Xu

MIRAD 2018

Communication Officer, Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University

Haolun Xu

What brought you to study your masters at UC?

I chose to enrol in a masters programme in hopes of deepening my knowledge in the field of political science, and improving my employability in the public sector.

In early 2017, I originally started applying for a Master of Arts, however unfortunately did not meet the requirements. This led to the UC admissions team suggesting I apply for the Master of International Relations and Diplomacy (MIRAD) instead, and through the help of the programme coordinator, Jeremy Moses, I submitted my application. Having supportive admissions officers and programme coordinators was one of the two main factors which led me to join the first cohort for MIRAD at UC. I am still very grateful that the admissions team put time into finding alternative options with me.

The MIRAD offered internship opportunities, which I deemed very valuable. International relations and diplomacy was also something that was important to me as I planned to work in the public sector either in NZ or China to promote that bilateral relationship.

So you say you had a career in mind when you first began this journey?

One month before graduating from UC, I received a job offer from Peking University (PKU) in China. This role gave me the opportunity to be part of the Office of Global Communications where my main role as to operate the University's social media platforms. This started my career working in communications.

I didn't necessarily expect to go down this path but it has laid a solid foundation for me moving forward. Communications is the type of work in which we build and develop content-related strategies to promote the public image of an organisation. I find the job exciting and fulfilling.

I recently moved to Suzhou to take on a new challenge as Communications Officer at Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU).

Can you tell us about this role?

My work at XJTLU is to promote the newly established Entrepreneur College. I produce news, feature stories, write speeches and arrange interviews.

Working with stakeholders is the best part of my job. A highlight recently was working with a journalist from Suzhou Broadcasting System to showcase student and campus life on their broadcasting multimedia platform.

What is it you enjoy most about your role? What is it that motivates you to do a good job?

Being valued, having personal growth opportunities, and being part of the brand image building - the three things I enjoy most are also the things that motivate me.

What UC experiences do you look back at most fondly?

Friendships! Most of my NZ friends are ones who I met whilst studying at UC. I will never forget the times we were writing together, proofreading each other's work, road trips to gaze at the Southern lights and being invited for Christmas lunch at a friend's house with her family. I also enjoy keeping my connection with my lecturer Jeremy Moses and supervisor Anne-Marie Brady. The older we get, the more valuable friends are to us.