Stories from Our Community

Feeding Connections Between Business and Government

After graduating from Xi'an International Studies University in Xi‘an, Shaanxi, China, Olivia (Miaozhu) Yuan became a Level 3 Interpreter certificated by China’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security.

While working at Shaanxi Development and Reform Commission, she applied her language skills to facilitating international business meetings for multinational corporations such as Wal-Mart.

She then decided she wanted to complement her linguistic skills with concrete policy knowledge, so she attended the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public and International Affairs. In 2014, she earned a Master of Public and International Affairs degree focused on international business and a Certificate of Advanced Asian Studies.

While a student, she took on multiple internships in Washington DC, serving as interpreter for the United Nations Development Program, coordinating events for the World Bank, and writing grant proposals for the Food and Agriculture Organization.

Following graduation, Olivia became a Research Assistant for IAS Group, proposing new models for Sino-American leadership. She also conducted policy analyses for the US-China Business Council and The Cohen Group in Washington DC. Finally, she returned to China as a communication specialist. “I understood the languages, business environments, and government landscapes on both sides,” she said, “so I could commit myself to becoming a bridge between the East and West.”

She soon moved to Shanghai to work for Ryan Communications, an Asian communications firm specializing in strategic corporate communication. She worked with multinational corporations, governments, and not-for-profit agencies to launch new products, raise capital, and navigate regulations.

In 2016, Olivia became a Government Affairs Specialist for McDonald's Corporation in Shanghai. She monitors the legislative landscape; executes legislative strategies to support McDonald’s public policy priorities in China; and builds relationships with key stakeholders to help advance the company’s objectives.

When asked about her work – in a sign of true brand loyalty - she simply said “I’m lovin’ it!”