China is Heaven: News from our BMIHMS Campus in Suzhou by Kallum W. Searle

The Blue Mountains International Hotel Management School – Suzhou Campus (BMIHMS) is a proud member of the Laureate Australia and New Zealand family. The boutique city of Suzhou is located 90 minutes west of Shanghai and is considered by many as ‘heaven on earth’, according to Campus Director, Fergus MacDougal.

“There’s an old saying in China: Paradise in Heaven; Suzhou and Hangzhou on earth – meaning there is heaven above and there is Suzhou and Hangzhou below” he said.

The campus itself is situated within the Suzhou Tourism and Finance Institute (STFI) – a pillar in the Suzhou community which plays host to approximately 4000 students each year. “About 70% of our Blue Mountains students come through the STFI program. We have approximately 200 students at any one time, so we’re a much smaller operation in terms of total student numbers; however, we’re fortunate enough to be exposed to world class hospitality management facilities. We’re essentially the international and western component of STFI.” added Fergus.   

Fourteen years in, the STFI partnership is one of the longest serving joint ventures between Australia and China, and is a vital relationship for the Laureate network. 

“We connect Chinese students with Australia, and Australian students come to China. Today, 50% of the inbound travel business in many countries including Australia, is Mandarin speaking, so we’re in a great position to be affecting positive change and creating new leaders. This is what we’ve been doing for some time, creating leaders, and it’s our mission moving forward.”

With a robust partnership with STFI, longevity in the community, and the BMIHMS name behind it, the School is well respected by local industry.

“We’re very sought after in the industry. Our students have won, and continue to win, global awards. We’re also proud to have several alumni working with the school – it’s a really cohesive environment, the family of BMIHMS, and it doesn’t stop at the classroom door – its carries on long after you graduate.”