A former King William’s College student has spoken of his ‘unforgettable experience’ after spending the summer in Hong Kong.
Tom Dutnall, 20, spent three months working at Strix in Hong Kong after being awarded the 2018 KWC Barrovian Alumni Internship. Open to former pupils aged 18 to 25, it was launched last year as an initiative between the College and the world-renowned manufacturing company. Tom, who has now returned to the University of Manchester for his second year studying for a degree in international business, economics and finance, said the whole experience of working and living in Asia was the ‘opportunity of a lifetime’.
‘To spend three months working in Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, in a multinational business has been simply amazing,’ he explained. ‘Learning how a business ticks in everyday life in a fiercely competitive market was a real eye-opener. It also surprised me how finely tuned my education has been both at College and University which allowed me to settle down in a demanding situation where my work actually added value to a company.’
Headquartered near Ronaldsway Airport, Strix has offices across the UK, China and Hong Kong, employing more than 850 people worldwide. It makes safety control systems for small domestic appliances and filtration systems for filter kettles, fridge jugs and chilled water units.
‘During my time at Strix I worked on different financial, human resources and IT projects which allowed me to develop interests and interact with different employees. These projects will be used within the company for years to come which shows the value of this internship to the business. I also had the chance to visit the factory out in China a number of times which opened my mind to other aspects of the business such as production and quality assurance. The staff of Strix, especially Catherine Tam (senior business analyst) who I worked closely with during the internship, welcomed and encouraged me and I’m so grateful to them and King William’s College. They helped me settle down in a new culture very quickly and kept in touch throughout. I’d recommend to any former students considering applying for this internship to do so without hesitation.’
The internship also provided Tom with the opportunity to travel and sample life in the Far East. He said: ‘
I just became embraced in Hong Kong life. I found myself straying away from the crowds and experiencing hidden gems like overlooking the vast skyscrapers in the city, hiking up Victoria Peak, and being tucked inside a temple of 10,000 Buddhas. I even, slowly, improved my chopstick skills by eating Chinese delicacies! I have learnt valuable skills and lessons and made unforgettable memories which I know will hold me in good stead for the future.’
Pauline McGee, Director of Group HR at Strix, said:
‘Tom clearly had a richly-rewarding trip and was a fine ambassador for both King William’s College and the Isle of Man. We look forward to continuing our work with the College and developing an internship which is going from strength to strength.’
Joss Buchanan, Principal of King William’s College, said:
‘It was wonderful to receive such positive feedback from Tom about his time in Hong Kong and the valuable experience, not just relating to his career prospects but also his personal development. He has made life-long friendships half way around the world and also caught up with OKWs (old King William’s College pupils) living in Hong Kong. This unique initiative reflects the breadth and depth of the International Baccalaureate, which all sixth form students at King William’s College study, and we look forward to seeing future alumni taking up the opportunity.’