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Stories that deserve to be told: Hongbo

03 December 2018

Study Group has a long history of helping international students prepare for successful futures.

For more than 20 years, Study Group’s partnerships with leading higher education providers have improved the prospects of students from around the world. Through a mixture of specialist English language tuition, study skills and subject-specific preparation, Study Group produces resilient graduates, ready to take their place in the global career market.

One such graduate is Hongbo, from China. This former student’s lifelong passion for aviation was turned into a career due to the support of staff at UCD International Study Centre.

“Moving to Dublin opened the door to the world for me.”

After completing his high school education in 2011, Hongbo aspired to move abroad to study. Held back by his limited level of English, he needed support to realise his ambitions.

After growing up in a busy, fast-paced environment in China, Hongbo chose University College Dublin (UCD) for its quiet campus and relaxed city atmosphere.

Like many of Study Group’s partner universities, UCD is among the top universities in the world, ranked 168th in the WS World University Rankings 2018. It has strong links with leading global companies, including 1,200 multinationals in Dublin.

A unique approach to education

Study Group prides itself on its tailored guidance, encouraging individual strengths and nurturing talent and skills in order to help every student succeed.

Hongbo’s Study Group journey began with specialist English preparation. Teachers at UCD International Study Centre worked with him to build confident communication skills, supporting him in his ambitious target to improve his IELTS score by several points in three months (as opposed to the standard twelve).

With the support of the Study Group staff at UCD International Study Centre, Hongbo did exactly what he set out to achieve. With his English language skills improved, he began a BSc in Computer Science at UCD.

Hongbo excelled on his course, and completed two internships: one at a software development firm, and one with Study Group, where he helped to raise the profile of the International Study Centre. With the support of teaching staff plus hard work and dedication, he was able to complete the course a year early.

After graduating, Hongbo stayed in Dublin and is now CEO and Co-Founder of Bonflite, a technology company bridging the gap between airlines, online travel providers and airport-based travel retailers. Funding and mentorship from accelerator programmes has seen his company go from strength to strength.

Watch Hongbo’s story here:


Meet Mei, another extraordinary Study Group alumna.

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