Meet the Hutong Team! Meet Amélie Papin, our General Manager in Shanghai!

Name: Amélie Papin
Occupation: General Manager – Hutong School Shanghai Branch
Hobbies: Heyrobics, Travelling and wandering around the city by bike
City and Country: Paris, France
Favorite food in China: Shao mai 烧麦, Baozi 包子, Jin mantou 金馒头


Why did you choose China? What attracted you?
I learned my first words of Mandarin in Hong Kong when I was 10 years old. In Business School, I chose to learn Chinese as a 3rd language. And in 2006, Hutong School gave me the opportunity to come to Beijing and participate in the 6-month Internship Program. That’s when I really started to learn the language and fell in love with the hutongs, the courtyards and the Beijing people. I just couldn’t resist moving back in September 2008 and have been in China ever since!

What motivates you to work at Hutong School?
Hutong School is not just a school, it’s not just a company, most importantly it’s a community! When I wake up in the morning, I’m happy to go to the office and I look forward to working with my colleagues. What keeps me going are the day-to-day challenges of trying to understand the culture, the language and the people, as well as the opportunity to grow within the company. It’s been an amazing adventure so far and I can’t imagine working anywhere else!

What’s your most favorable memory?
When I first arrived in Beijing, it was a bit cold and I wanted to buy soup at the Carrefour supermarket. I asked one of the employees to show me where to buy them and ended up in the candy department! That’s when I realized I had pronounced soup (“tang”) with the 2nd tone, instead of with the 1st tone! Ah yes, learning Chinese can be tricky but it’s very rewarding once you start to master the language! And the more you learn, the more you understand and appreciate the whole culture!


Thai Binh Ho Van
Marketing Assistant Intern