Tis the season of Columbia Chazen pre-trip meetings. While most groups are likely discussing the logistics of visiting vineyards in South America and the hippest restaurants in London, the China Healthcare Trip students had a very different conversation. Over delicious sesame noodles and dumplings at Han Dynasty restaurant, we chatted about the logistics of VPNs, the high security frisking students received while picking up visas, the annoyance of Facebook being blocked, and the necessity of avoiding sensitive government-related conversations. When we placed our Chazen bid points on the China Healthcare tour, we knew China would bring different logistical aspects. Nonetheless, the opportunity to meet with Lilly Asia, Shanghai Pharma, and Sequoia (to name a few healthcare companies) and have firsthand experience in the country referenced in all our classes seemed worth all the “hassle” of visiting a communist country.
Admittingly, I am a healthcare nerd: since sophomore year of College, I’ve catered my academic and career choices towards the healthcare sector. Bias aside, the company visits on our upcoming trip are nothing short of impressive. Pharmaceutical, digital health, hospitals, and rehabilitation companies provide a diverse emergence into the Chinese healthcare industry. Now would be an appropriate time to publicly thank our hosts Chloe Li, Mingming Wu, and Tiffany Zhao. Without them, we would not be able to visit such a line up of companies. Maor Cohen and Daniyal Hussain deserve public acknowledgement for their leadership and dedication to bringing this trip to fruition.
Some of us are lucky enough to make a pit stop in Seoul, Korea before the group reunites at the Renaissance Beijing Wangfujing Hotel on March 17th. We will spend the afternoon adjusting to the culture and walking around Beijing. We will start our company visits on Monday morning with a visit to United Family Healthcare. Stay tuned!