Revival of our Seeds for the Future complete program 2023


Since 2014, Huawei has been supporting promising Swiss IT talents in the "Seeds for the Future" program. In the current year, it was finally possible to complete the trip to China again, which is always the highlight of the cross-disciplinary exchange project between Swiss universities of applied sciences and Huawei. Future Swiss business IT specialists, IT engineers and business engineers from 6 Swiss colleges and universities undertook their study trip to the Land of the Rising Sun in August.

Our Huawei student program "Seeds for the Future" is designed to give tech-savvy students from a wide range of disciplines an insight into the knowledge and technology of the emerging high-tech superpower China. To this end, Huawei has been organizing competitions at its Swiss partner universities for almost ten years. Six universities and universities of applied sciences take part. The selection of students is up to the universities; 16 places are usually awarded.

The program in Switzerland is designed as a private-public partnership that works across universities and over the long term. The program is ECTS-compatible, i.e., equivalent to an elective module in the 5th or 6th semester. The high level of practical relevance makes it attractive for prospective business informatics specialists, computer science engineers and industrial engineers. What the students learn during their Bachelor's program in classroom lectures on international and intercultural management or the basics of telecommunications culminates in the two-week research trip to China.

  «As I reflect on this incredible adventure, I’m reminded of how much more there is to learn, explore and contribute to technology innovation.»

Nick Bosshard,
Student Bsc. Business Engineering,
Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz

As usual in the pre-Corona years, we started this year's Seeds for the Future project in March. We collected applications until April - the respective professors of the partner universities evaluated the candidates and gave their recommendation based on the grade point average and the letter of motivation. Usually the FHNW, HSLU, ZHAW, the University of Applied Sciences EAST, the Bern University of Applied Sciences BFH, the FH St. Gallen and the University of Applied Sciences Western Switzerland (HES SO) are participating in the programme. Afterwards, the students went through a qualified interview, in which our HR was also involved, in order to really select the best of the best for the project. The programme opens up a talent pool of local junior staff for us, so the early involvement of our HR department helps to align their job planning in the long term.

After the positive decision, we called the participants together on 29.6.2023 for a kick-off at the Joint Innovation Hub of Sunrise and Huawei in Zurich-Opfikon.

  «I am incredibly grateful to share that I was selected as one of the few fortunate participants in Huawei's prestigious "Huawei Seeds For The Future" program.»

Erdem Demircan,
Student in Business Engineering,
Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz

The aim of the kick-off is to introduce the students to the Seeds for the Future program and Huawei's ongoing commitment to developing local talent. After the welcome by the CEO of the Swiss Rep Office, Mengze Li and Manuel Küffer from the local PACD team explained the role of this flagship CSR project and of Huawei as a global technology leader. PACD Director Lihua Pu gave an introduction to China.

June and July were dedicated to travel and program preparations and on 18.8.2023 we finally left Zurich for Shanghai. Sightseeing was the order of the day over the weekend.

Some impressions of our students:

  «In Shanghai, the skyline was unlike anything I’d seen before. The tall buildings were so impressive, way bigger that what we have in Switzerland. I loved how the city combined modern skyscrapers with its rich culture».

Oliver Wernli,
Bachelor Business Engineering,
Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz

The stay in Shanghai was also used to build and maintain Swiss-Chinese relations. One visit was to Swissnex, an initiative of the Swiss State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation, which aims to promote Swiss-Chinese cooperation in these areas. The study group also visited the Swiss Consulate and the Swiss-China Chamber of Commerce.

Another highlight was the visit to Huawei Shanghai and the exhibition hall for intelligent automotive solutions.

In the following days, the students dealt with cutting-edge technology topics such as Artificial Intelligence, IoT in the strands of trends and strategies as well as new business models and Cloud as "Cutting Edge Technology" and last but not least 5G. For Huawei, it is important to emphasize that these technologies are not an end in themselves but bring benefits to society as a whole and to people. This credo was also followed by participation in the "Tech4Good" project. The development of entrepreneurial skills among young students is one of the objectives of "Seeds for the Future".

In addition, it is about transferring academic knowledge into practice across disciplines. By encountering a completely different culture, the students are also familiarized with alternative leadership mechanisms. And last but not least, the students enthusiastically embraced the sheer dimensions of innovation at the Huawei campus in Shenzhen, where the graduation ceremony also took place.

  «Our expedition then led us to Shenzhen, often hailed as the Silicon Valley of China. Here, we were captivated by the pulsating energy of the city's tech-driven atmosphere. Amidst the bustling streets and state-of-the-art facilities, we had the privilege of attending enlightening lectures that delved into the intricate realms of 5G, AI, and IoT. Witnessing these innovations firsthand within a city renowned for its rapid technological growth was truly inspiring.»
This expedition wasn't just about witnessing the technological marvels of AI, 5G, and IoT; it was about understanding the synergy between culture and innovation that propels nations forward.

Monja Wyss,
Bachelor of Science in Business Engineering,
Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz

Zhang Yan, Head of Global Public Affairs at Huawei, gave a closing speech to the participants of the Swiss delegation gathered on the campus of the Huawei headquarters. His words made the young people once again clearly aware of the high priority that "Seeds for the Future" has in Huawei's vision: Tech4Good is not a slogan, but a mission and the young generation should be empowered to implement it.

On behalf of the Swiss team, Moana Frauchiger expressed her gratitude. After the young Swiss students got to know Huawei and saw China with their own eyes, they have a different picture than the one painted by the media in Switzerland.

  «It was a journey that allowed us to immerse ourselves in China's rich and diverse culture, an opportunity made possible by Huawei and Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz FHNW... Shenzhen…showcased a lifestyle seamlessly integrated with technology, demonstrating how far ahead they are in this regard…This journey has left an indelible mark on me. The knowledge gained and the memories created will undoubtedly shape my perspective for years to come.»

Moana Frauchiger,
Bachelor of Science in Engineering and Management,
Digital Engineering,
Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz

Even after returning to Switzerland, the extraordinary impressions of the trip reverberated. The students proudly posted their experiences on social media, expressing sincere gratitude to Huawei and their respective universities. And they share their experiences with their fellow students at relevant events so that the seed sown can spread further.