Peking University plays favorites with foreign students

| August 23rd, 2011

From 21cn:

A post on the (a popular student social network in China) by an American student under the Chinese name Guo Jiaxin exposed the difference between Chinese students’ dormitory condition and the foreign students’ in Peking university, China’s top-notch university and bringing the issues under the spotlight.


A Japanese student in her dormitory – Zhong-guan-xin-yuan in Peking University


A Chinese student in her dormitory crowded with her stuff

Guo claimed that the university has made a lot of improvement to their foreign students’ dormitories during this summer vacation. They have renovated the swimming pool, the bowling center, KTV rooms, the gymnasium and the billiards room. While the foreign students are enjoying the new, well-conditioned dormitories, the Chinese students are living in the old shabby dormitories with plank bed (no mattress), and no air-conditioner. Guo also called for improvement and equal treatment for the Chinese student in her post.

A female student in Peking University said that the dormitory doesn’t have enough space at all. She has to put their clothes under the bed or on the desk. She keeps only the clothes for the current season and the rest are sent back home. Most of the domestic school dormitory is 4-bed room and cost around 700 to 1000 yuan per academic year. There’s no TV, no air-conditioner in the dormitory. Many Chinese students expressed that they would like to pay more for the dormitory if the condition of the dormitory can be improved.

One officer in the management staff for student dormitory who refused to make his name public, explained that the Zhong-guan-xin-yuan is a new dormitory for foreign students. It’s much better conditioned than the old one. Besides, their dormitory fees are accordingly much higher than the domestic students. And it takes time to improve domestic student’s dormitories and it’s impossible to reach the standard of the foreign students’ dormitories in a short period of time.”

Many people find the difference hard to accept and accuse the University of being favoring foreign students over Chinese students. They joked that, though both are students in the Peking University, the foreign student dormitories are like star hotels while the Chinese students are sleeping on wood planks.” Blogger Zuo Chongnian satirizes that the double standard of student’s dormitories is the result of some people’s over-friendly hypocrisy.

Comments from netizens:


“If only we could enjoy the same treatment when we go study abroad…”


If the University’s fund is over tilted to the foreign student, it will ultimately harm the domestic student’s interests.


为留学生提供优厚环境从情感上讲,他们是外国友人,给予照顾可以理解。Offering a good living condition to the foreign students is offering them emotional support, they are from far away so it is reasonable.

29 Comments | Leave a comment | Comment feed

  1. Visitor says:


    “If only we could enjoy the same treatment when we go study abroad…”

    You do get the same treatment when you study abroad, Just compare the tuition fees that foreign students have to pay. Foreign Students are a great source of income to universities paying many times more in tuition than domestic students. You get what you pay for, simple.

  2. asdf says:

    You say that foreigners have to pay a lot for tuition but then so do out of state students. You do realize that for in-state students they pay less because their tuition is subsidized from mostly state and some federal funds through taxes. Because international students’ families don’t pay taxes, why should we subsidize their education?

    The income for the universities is the same whether the student is local, domestic, or international. There is no big money being made at the expense of international students like you would like to claim…

    • Gary says:

      “Because international students’ families don’t pay taxes, why should we subsidize their education?”

      You’re thinking of legitimate international students. If foreign students can sneak into the USA illegally then they only have to pay in-state tuition at California universities.

  3. Gary says:

    From the size of the person compared to the width of the rooms it looks like the inhabitant of the lower picture is just a very messy person. The rooms look almost the same size. The complaint about mattresses versus boards sounds like a legitimate gripe though.

  4. korean_guy says:

    koreans bitches are all sluts. Korean men are all retarded ugly fucks. I am korean, I would know.

  5. 222Rn says:

    So how much does the foreign student pay for the better room? Why bother telling us how much the 4-bed room costs, if you are not going to give us a price comparison?

    • Daniel Bos says:

      According to “the internet”, a 2-bed room costs RMB 2400 per month for international students… So I don’t know what Chinese are complaining about? That is only like 40 times more expensive?

      • Stu says:

        It looks like people are complaining that they don’t have the option of paying a lot more to get fancier accommodation. However- if Chinese students are rich enough, they can just rent their own private accommodation, and can get a much better deal that way (spend 2400 yuan a month, even in the expensive university area, and there’s no way you’ll be sharing a room). So… it’s probably students who couldn’t afford to live there anyway who are complaining, which would make it a matter of principle- nationalist pride, as ever. But in that case it’s a pretty stupid principle, since if the university did respond and build shiny, expensive new accommodation for Chinese students, I’m sure it would divert resources away from the rooms most Chinese students could actually afford…

  6. Bn says:

    I have actually stayed there as a foreign exchange student before. The dorms for foreign students are much much more expensive (IIRC I paid about 75rmb a day for a two bedroom).

  7. expatrick says:

    Chinese people don’t deserve decent accomodations. It’s like giving a dog a king sized bed. Why?

    But don’t worry, once the US starts an inter-Asian war and then benefits from it, we’ll be sure to spare some grizzle for the Chinamen/Gooks/Japs.

  8. meme says:

    Stop buying so much crap to show of to everyone, Chinese students! I see you do it all the time, and obviously you do it at Peking U. as well!

  9. Huzhang says:

    Why would anyone need separate dorms for foreign and domestic students to begin with?

    • Bo Wang says:

      So the Chinese minds won’t be polluted by foreigner ways of thinking.

    • Stu says:

      Originally it was probably (partly) a political decision, cos foreigners can’t be trusted. Also, though, I think there is an idea that foreign students wouldn’t want to put up with the living conditions of Chinese dorms. Finally, if you put foreigners in nice dorms you can charge them for much much more of those beautiful dollars.

    • Andy says:

      That is a very good question. In the US a foreign student would not have accommodations any different from a domestic student and be of equal stature.

    • Rachel says:

      It is a government law. When I enrolled my son at Sichuan University to study I wanted him to stay in the Chinese dorms. I was told it was not allowed because it is a government policy.

  10. Meth says:

    It’s all about the money, China loves to reason the “supply and demand” situation…. well, there goes one example. I dare them to show proof of tuition fees, let’s see how much is the tuition fee of the foreigners versus the local’s.

  11. Nelson says:

    Hello! My first visit, will visit you again. Seriously, I thoroughly enjoyed your posts. Congratulations for your work. If you wish to follow back that would be great I’m at
    Thanks for sharing!

  12. Don Tai says:

    Ahhh, my old university and of course my old dorm, Shao Yuan. The foreign student dorm rooms have changed little in 20 years. Furniture has been upgraded from metal to wood, but the room is largely unchanged. Each foreign student had a bed, desk, bookcase and a closet. The Chinese dorm has been vastly upgraded. Before Chinese students used to live 6 to a room, in bunk beds, with only 2 desks for 6 students, no shelving, bookcases or cabinets. Today there is only 4 to a room, each student has a desk, bookcase and upper cabinets. This is a significant upgrade from the past, no doubt about it.

    In the 1980s there were few foreign students at Beida. Each foreign student shared a room with a specially chosen Chinese student. I am unsure about the reasons. Possibly to stave off loneliness for foreigners, or to accelerate the learning of Mandarin for the foreigner, or to teach Communism, I do not know. As the number of foreign students increased, the dorms were split.

    It is a treat for me to see these photos. At least some things have stayed the same in Beijing University.

  13. Max Headroom says:

    Again, what are the price differences in tuition fees and apartment costs between chinese and foreign students? Is someone making more money out of foreign students?
    I find it hard to believe that its a conscious decision to treat local students worse than foreign ones?

    • Daniel Bos says:

      As I mentioned above, according to a quick internet search, foreign students pay 2400 RMB per month for their “lavish” accommodation, while Chinese students pay (according to the article) 700-1000 RMB per *year*, so about 60-80 RMB per month… Hence the difference :)

      As a comparison, 2400 RMB per month will get you a pretty decent apartment off-campus, instead of a shared room…

  14. foreign students says:

    foreign students get better roooms beuase they are paying much more around 6000rmb per year atleast

  15. lil one says:

    1. These pictures are straight dumb! The girl on the top picture has very little things with her because she is not from China and problably only staying their 1 semester!

    2. That bitch on the bottom needs to clean up! She is living like that because she wants to.

    Ain’t no one talking shit when you all come to the US to study…on the other hand, keep coming…we need the money!

  16. JJ82 says:

    Protip: don’t feed the trolls ;)

  17. Zeddy says:

    C’mon we foreigners pay way more than local students, both in accommodation fee and tuition fee. so if the local students want the same life style, why dont they just pay up and get the room they want.
    Stop being cheap if you want a good life.

  18. aaron says:

    I remember seeing the dorm room of a friend when I studied in Beijing back in 97. There were 7 girls cramped into a relatively small room. I felt a little guilty knowing that I only had one roommate. Gotta respect the hard work and circumstances of Chinese students.

  19. American says:

    It is unfortunate that Chinese and foreign students don’t get the same lodgings. They do here in the United States.

    That’s something to take up with the people running the Universities. Blaming anyone else is pointless although it may make you feel better.

  20. me says:


    I looked you up, you are not Korean, you are white. Stop pretending to be Korean and stop inciting hatred between the Asians.

    I am ashamed of you using the name “Korean” to write these foul garbage.

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