Americans finding jobs in China
Shanghai and Beijing are becoming new lands of opportunity for recent American college graduates who face unemployment nearing double digits at home. Even those with limited or no knowledge of Chinese are heeding the call. They are lured by China's surging economy, the lower cost of living and a chance to bypass some of the dues-paying that is common to first jobs in the United States.
"I've seen a surge of young people coming to work in China over the last few years," said Jack Perkowski, founder of Asimco Technologies, one of the largest automotive parts companies in China. "When I came over to China in 1994, that was the first wave of Americans coming to China," he said. "These young people are part of this big second wave."
Joshua Arjuna Stephens就是其中一员。2007年他从美国卫斯里安大学毕业，并获得了美国研究专业学士学位。两年前，他便决定到上海的一家教育旅游公司China Prep打暑期零工。
One of those in the latest wave is Joshua Arjuna Stephens, who graduated from Wesleyan University in 2007 with a bachelor's degree in American studies. Two years ago, he decided to take a temporary summer position in Shanghai with China Prep, an educational travel company.
"I didn't know anything about China," said Mr. Stephens, who worked on market research and program development. "People thought I was nuts to go not speaking the language, but I wanted to do something off the beaten track."
Two years later, after stints in the nonprofit sector and at a large public relations firm in Beijing, he is highly proficient in Mandarin and works as a manager for XPD Media, a social media company based in Beijing that makes online games.
耶鲁大学北京同学会主席、2007届毕业生Grace Hsieh告诉记者，自从她两年前来到中国，她见证了越来越多的耶鲁毕业生到北京工作。现在，她在北京一家叫做Hill & Knowlton的公关公司做客户经理。
Grace Hsieh, president of the Yale Club in Beijing and a 2007 graduate, says she has seen a rise in the number of Yale graduates who have come to work in Beijing since she arrived in China two years ago. She is working as an account executive in Beijing for Hill & Knowlton, the public relations company.
还有Sarabeth Berman，她于 2006年自美国巴纳德学院城市研究专业毕业，23岁时初到北京，就担任了一个同龄人在美国难以企及的职位--北京雷动天下现代舞团项目总监。“雷动天下”是中国第一家非政府资助的独立现代舞团。
Sarabeth Berman, a 2006 graduate of Barnard College with a major in urban studies, initially arrived in Beijing at the age of 23 to take a job that would have been difficult for a person her age to land in the United States: program director at BeijingDance/LDTX, the first modern dance company in China to be founded independently of the government.
Ms. Berman said she was hired for her familiarity with Western modern dance rather than a knowledge of China. "Despite my lack of language skills and the fact that I had no experience working in China, I was given the opportunity to manage the touring, international projects, and produce and program our annual Beijing Dance Festival."
After two years of living and working in China, Ms. Berman is proficient in Mandarin. She travels throughout China, Europe and the United States with the dance company.
Willy Tsao, the artistic director of BeijingDance/LDTX, said he had hired Ms. Berman because of her ability to make connections beyond China. "I needed someone who was capable of communicating with the Western world." Another dynamic in the hiring process, Mr. Tsao says, is that Westerners can often bring skills that are harder to find among the Chinese.
"Sarabeth is always taking initiative and thinking what we can do," he said, "while I think the more standard Chinese approach is to take orders." He says the difference is rooted in the educational system. "In Chinese schools students are encouraged to be quiet and less outspoken; it fosters a culture of listening more than initiating."
A big draw of working in China, many young people say, is that they feel it allows them to skip a rung or two on the career ladder.
Ms. Berman said: "There is no doubt that China is an awesome place to jump-start your career. Back in the U.S., I would be intern No. 3 at some company or selling tickets at Lincoln Center."
对于23岁的Jason Misium而言，中国帮他解决了创业的现金流问题。2008年从哈佛大学获得生物学学位后，Misium来到中国学习中文。后来，他和朋友Matthew Young一起创办了Sophos学术集团，帮助那些准备去美国留学的中国人做咨询。
For others, like Jason Misium, 23, China has solved the cash flow problem of starting a business. After graduating with a degree in biology from Harvard in 2008, Mr. Misium came to China to study the language. Then, with a friend, Matthew Young, he started Sophos Academic Group, an academic consulting firm that works with Chinese students who want to study in the United States.
"It's China's fault that I'm still here," he said. "It's just so cheap to start a business." It cost him the equivalent of $12,000, which he had in savings, he said.