Chinese Student Blazes Educational Path
From ICB Undergraduate to Master’s in Finance & Risk Management
Siyuan Rao, an international student at the University of Colorado Denver, understands that engaging in a comprehensive educational pathway is a major step to academic success and to a graduate’s future career. Rao has wisely pursued a number of the options that students can discover at CU Denver.
“This has been an unbelievable opportunity and experience,”
Rao commented when looking back at her journey at the university. She began her undergraduate studies at International College Beijing (ICB), which is a joint program between the University of Colorado Denver and China Agricultural University. The ICB program was one of the first of its kind to be approved by the Chinese Ministry of Education; this year marks the 20th anniversary of this productive partnership.
While earning her bachelor’s degree in economics, Rao was selected to be one of two exemplary international students to represent the university at a prestigious government event, where she met the Lt. Governor of Colorado.
During 2012, the Office of International Affairs and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences joined together to create a $5,000 graduate fellowship to be awarded each year to an outstanding ICB undergraduate student to continue his or her studies in a graduate degree program at the University of Colorado Denver. Rao became the first winner of the ICB Graduate Fellowship.
She began her graduate program in finance at CU Denver in the fall 2013 semester. Continuing her enthusiasm for helping others and to gain more knowledge relevant to her field, Rao also began to assist with teaching in the department of economics. Following this, she obtained an experiential learning internship at a Denver water utilities company, where she worked in the finance department.
“When I decided to study in finance, I realized that finance is more about theories and economics is more about application. So I have realized how to combine the two, which is very helpful for my future profession.”
With more than 130 degree programs in its 13 schools and colleges, the University of Colorado Denver offers unique options for customizing degree programs. Many international students begin their pathway to scholastic success through English immersion at the university’s ESL Academy. Going beyond the classroom, others also take advantage of opportunities in service learning and volunteerism through the university’s Experiential Learning Center.
Rao will be graduating in December 2014 with a master’s in finance and risk management; she noted that graduate school has been “very challenging and very rigorous.”
“I had many papers to read, and you have to keep up with every math class so you don’t fall behind.”
She found it especially interesting to learn how theories had practical application in areas such as derivative related futures and contracts, trading skills, and other complicated processes.
Although she studied diligently in her free time, she also took time to enjoy hiking and camping in Colorado’s scenic Rocky Mountains. “This is a great place to study. You will definitely have a great experience in school, but also, you can explore the outdoors here. There are lots of people of people to talk to and learn from.”
According to Rao, there has been much support at the university and “the people are so friendly”.
“I feel that this school should definitely be one of your choices when you’re considering a university. You can really open your mind here in Denver.”
For more information about International Admissions at the University of Colorado Denver, visit: interntionaladmissions.ucdenver.edu.
To learn about the ESL Academy, visit: ESL.ucdenver.edu.
Find out more about International College Beijing at: international.ucdenver.edu/Beijing