Zhen Li (Roger)

Zhen Li(Roger)


Thunderbird University

Master of Business Administration

Class of 2012


When I was on the stage of commencement and holding Dr. Cabrera`s hand smiling to the camera, I suddenly realized this would be my last memory of this school. I still felt there were many more things I could explore in Thunderbird, however I was eager to start a new page in my life.

Two years ago when I decided to pursue an MBA education and aplly to Thunderbird School of Global Management, I could have never imaged how the experience would impact my life. I crossed a door and found a world which was only existed in my dreams. I experienced both success and failure in the MBA program, and the most important thing was that I built a global mindset and embraced differences between cultures.

Though I learned the theories of cross-cultural communication later in Thunderbird`s classes, I had already practiced it before. Specifically, it was between the Hinrich Foundation and myself.

After got the offer from Thunderbird, there were many challenges in front of me before I could ever go to business school. A significant barrier was financial difficulties. Despite that the school provided a scholarship, it could not afford to study there full-time. Therefore, I tried to search for available scholarships online.

Soon I found TAFAS sponsored by The Hinrich Foundation. Fortunatley, I passed the interviews and got the TAFAS scholarship. It taught me the importance of exploring the possibilities, even when you feel you have no chance.

In the other side, I really appreciate the generosity of Thunderbird alumni. It is one the most exciting moments in my life when I saw the email offer of a full-tuition scholarship for my MBA study. When I take a look back now, the scholarship is much more than a simple financial support – it took me on a new life journey.

After becaming a TAFAS scholar, I found it also connected me to a great professional network. This eventually led me to a great opportunity this year to work for Global Sources. I’m currently working as a Management Trainee at Global Sources. I am in charge of marketing project to identify a potential market in China export, and also rotating in sales department, which provides me a unique opportunity to touch the fundamental facts of this industry. It is not an easy job to work in the bottom and deal with prospects every day. However, it also is a window for me to learn the overall market.

As it is always said, the first step will be fundamental and an indicator of the final result. I believe my Hinrich Scholarship is great start for my career development, and the opportunity that The Hinrich Foundation offers has had a huge impact on myself and, in a broader perspective, many other future business leaders. I am grateful for what I have, and ready to return in future.