The International College Experience (in Taiwan)

Uploaded by iMaculateiMagez on 18.09.2012

[iMaculate iMages presents]
Hi, I'm Tina from Taiwan.
And I'm Leroy Anthony Johnson from Saint Kitts and Nevis.
Today, we're going to talk about the education in Taiwan. Where both government
and Taiwan universities seem to be equally competing for the stage.
But, let's take a look at what international students are saying.
Hi, my name is Gloria Morales. I'm from the Marshall Islands.
My name is Kay Khumalo from Swaziland.
[Greeting in Nauran] My name is Darrius Detenamo, and I'm from the Republic of Nauru
[Translation] My name is Thitipa Metawareeruck, and I'm from Thailand.
[Translation] My name is Chu Wei Hung, and you can call me 'Da Hei.' I am a...
TITLE: INTERNATIONAL COLLEGE: Why did you choose to have an International College experience?
I chose IC because I heard it from another student here, that I will actually
learn a lot from other international students. And it's going to be different from other
I came to Taiwan only to find out that this was the only option I had because it
was the only school that taught fully in English.
Because I like creativity so much and thinking outside the box.
As a Taiwanese, we...the way that we enrolled into IC is totally different from
you guys. We have to pass the...entrance exam and then we transfer into IC. So, the main
reason why I came to IC is probably to...I wanted to improve my English.
I just wanted to learn Chinese and English at the same time to earn some more experience
that's not just in my country but I would like to know and learn from other people from
different countries.

Speaking of reasons, I remember my reason for coming to IC.
What is it?
I was in Taiwan and I am very interested in media. So, I looked for a course in Journalism
and Mass Communication but the only one provided English was IC.
Yep, so that's why I'm here.
Did you have any challenges after this?
Not really, have you?
I have a lot. It's a big challenge for us...for a Taiwanese. Because English
is not your native language, you'll get nervous about this. And the biggest fear is when you
want to make friends. You'll really want to talk to foreigners but then you have a
big obstacle with that.
That's true.
Remember the first time that you met me?
Oh yeah [laughs], that was funny but that's enough about our fears. Let's
hear what the other IC students have to say about their fears.
TITLE: FEAR FACTOR: What was your biggest fear in entering International College?
When I was a freshman, I was really afraid and scared because...
The expectation of meeting different people from different cultures and not knowing
how to interact with them. As much as I knew other people from other cultures, it was something
that was totally new to me.
I've never been our of my island before, so I felt out of place mainly because the
students are different and the teaches are different.
I studied abroad before so I had no problems with blending in. But stepping
into that tertiary level of education was very overwhelming for me, so I think that
was probably the biggest fear for me.
I guess my biggest fear might be identical to most of the Taiwanese students.
Foreign students...
to communicate with them I was even sweating under the air conditioning
of 16ºC because I didn't know how to make that move to communicate with you guys.
English is not my language. And I never...even though I have learned it before in Thailand,
we only speak in Thai to Thai people. We don't speak English. That's why I was really afraid
of that, and I was afraid of foreigners.

Speaking about fear, speaking about is my biggest fear was my first impression. Oh wait, impressions.
Talking about that, what was your first impression of me?
You? You looked different and you spoke English very quick. I didn't get it when you
introduced yourself.
Well, I guess everyone has different impressions and that's what we're going to
speak of next.
TITLE: FIRST IMPRESSIONS: What was your first impression of your International College classmates?
My first impression of Taiwanese students was uh...
They were really shy.
Kenny: Most of them, not all, most of them were really curious about all the wrong things...
and then yet, at the same time they were shy.
They were really nice and friendly.
My first impression...[hand gesture]
I thought...I thought wrong, because you're in an international college so...
It wasn't really offensive, but it was a bit little bit surprising the things that
they were curious about. Being at school, the things you expect someone to ask you being
at school. Since I come from Africa, I would get questions such as, "So have you ever seen
a lion? Do you have lions in your city?" Or something like that. Sometimes they will ask
about the clothes that you wear, "Did you get it in Taiwan?" It's as if to them we get
the clothes when we get off at the airport. In their heads from what I figured they assume
we didn't have stuff that normal people would have in this time and age.
Talkative you know, in class.
Very passive bunch of fellows.
The first impression...foreign students are really expressive... in any way.

Those ideas are their first impressions at international college but after four years
there must be some changes. So for you new students in IC, our advice would be - open
your mind to everyone. Don't think, "He's a foreigner, he's Taiwanese." No. There's
no gap between foreigners and Taiwanese. We are all in this together in this class.
TITLE: FRIENDS = BENEFITS: What was the most beneficial aspect of your International College
Yes, a lot of benefits.
The first thing for me is friends. I have a lot of friends, and they're really,
really good friends for me.
The benefit for me of being an IC student is being able to actually be in the same place
and interact with students from various countries.
St. Vincent [and the Grenadines]. St. Kitts [and Nevis]. St. Lucia. Haiti. Taiwan.
Swaziland. Of course the people from the Pacific states. Kiribati. Marshall Islands. Solomon
Islands. Fiji. Also people from Central America. El Salvador. Panama. It's overwhelming how
international we are.
When you apply for a job and you know how to speak English? I'll have no fear
to compare myself to students who graduated from a national university because I'll know
I can talk to someone in English with confidence. So that's the benefit I see.

What would you change if you could do something differently?
TITLE: THINK DIFFERENT: How could you have improved your International College experience?
Taiwanese students, from what I've noticed they seem to go with the same trend and nobody
wants to think out of the box and dare to differ. I've seen a whole lot of changes with
some people and with some people, they were almost the same as when we first came in as
freshmen. So, those that dared to differ, actually they learned a lot and it changed
them a lot for the best.
Making friends with other foreigners would be a good thing before they even start
International College and when they're in an International College they should try to
mingle more with other foreigners.
Be active. Don't be passive. Get out there and socialize more. It's just going
to be very rewarding to learning in the long term because you'll say, "I'm glad I did that
because I learned something from that." I can teach them what I've come to experience
and they can teach me what they've come to experience in their lifetime.
Four years is a long time for somebody to stay in one country and not learn the language.
I know it's a little bit embarrassing but that's one thing that I could do different
if I could go back. I would learn the language because as much as you can try to understand
certain cultures, you will never understand it as much as the person who knows the language.
They are certain limitations to that if you do not know the language.
Be more tolerant to Taiwanese students because, culturally speaking, we're not encouraged
to talk. Back in either high school, junior high school, senior high school or elementary
school, we are asked to listen most of the time. When the teacher asks you to do anything,
all we have to do complain, no feedback. Just do it. So, when it comes to university,
when it comes to class, whenever the professors asks any questions we will always put our
heads down and pretend we don't have any questions.
Some Taiwanese, they're not really...they don't really seem to be joined...we don't seem
to be together like IC. It's supposed to be we're all in this together but they seem to
think they're Chinese, then they keep chatting and sharing only with some of their friends
together. But [towards] foreigners, they're totally separated. So I think they should
maybe open their minds a little bit and come and join with us.

I remember the first time we came to IC. Remember how close we all were together?
We had lunch together. We chilled together. We played bowling together. Those were some
fun times. But then, we kind of grew apart didn't we?
Yes. People make mistakes. Me too. So, for you new students in IC, our advice will
be - I'm a student, he's a student. I want to learn, he wants to learn too. Don't just
talk with Taiwanese friends. Open your mind to all of the students here in your class.
Exactly! Since we did things differently, and we're hoping to change it. Maybe some
advice from IC students will help you from making the same mistakes that we did.
TITLE: FRIENDLY ADVICE: What advice would you offer to enhance an International College
Just basically respect. You just have to treat another person as well as you'll
treat yourself.
If you want to be approached, approach them first. It's got to start somewhere so
you have to start it.
We all come from different cultures and we're all proud of where we come from to a
certain extent. Just because they're different from you doesn't mean you're different from
them or you're better than them. Nobody's better when it comes to this whole situation.
Just as much with everything else, try to learn more, and try to socialize with them
as much as you'd like people to.
Communication is about the language. When you want to communicate with somebody
you need to use language, so I think language is really important. Even though you're a
foreigner, for me, I think Chinese is really important too because you cannot only use
English everywhere you want to go and to everyone that you want to talk to. When you come here
to Taiwan, you need to learn about the culture and understand it as well. It's supposed to be
two, both of them, foreigners and Taiwanese that communicate together.
My advice to Taiwanese students? Come on! Guys, speak up, for yourself! I know,
you know you can do better than what you're doing now. The language barrier is not a problem.
It's never a problem. You might not be really good at talking in English but I know you
have ideas. So just speak up. Your classmates wouldn't judge you based on how good you speak
English but what you have in your mind. So just speak up. You can do it!
Now you are a part of IC, so what you'll need to learn is to take our advice and learn
more. Do you want to learn English better? Do you want to make friends and learn about
new cultures? What you can change can be totally different to us. You can make more changes
and make more challenges for yourself.
Indeed! So, don't look at this as just a challenge. Look at everything as an
adventure. From eating food, to having personal and inter-personal relationships. Both with
local and international students. And it's for you to make this experience an international