Nhi Luc: Chengdu American Center

Here I am in the Southern Sea Bamboo Forest with my GMEO T-Shirt!

I appreciate GMEO for supporting me this amazing study abroad opportunity in Chengdu. I am a Communications Major at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Vancouver, British Columbia. My family is from Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam.

From now on, seeing any Panda bears will recall my beautiful memories of Chengdu. Like the Pandas, I appreciate bamboo.

This picture was also taken in the Southern Sea Bamboo Forest. I love the peaceful atmosphere at this lake in early morning. I wish I had more time to stay here. I guess one month is really short… I need more time in China!

This is me and my “da ge” (big brother) classmate in the field trip for Silk Road class. In that class, I made a presentation on the spread of musical instruments along the Silk Roads.

We went to Jinsha Museum which shows the history of Jinsha civilization founded in Sichuan province thousands years ago.

This is me playing “dan tranh” (Vietnamese zither or Yue Nan guzheng) on my teacher’s birthday. I love learning and exchanging cultures. My teacher was really happy to receive this gift from me (hehe!).

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Sangyub Lee: My Summer in Chengdu

My Intermediate Chinese class, with classmates and teacher. I’m making progress!

My name is Sangyub, and I’m originally from South Korea, near Busan.

I’m a student at Fairleigh Dickinson University, at the Vancouver campus (Canada). I am a Business Major, and of course it is important to know China first hand. I now have a much better understanding!

I came to Chengdu with G-MEO’s program at the Chengdu American Center.

On the bus, after going to the Yoga festival.

My first time eating Chinese style Jiajangmian. It was totally different from Korea’s style.

I’ve made friends here from around the world.

Exploring Chengdu, with my Silk Road class mates. My Summer in Chengdu was an outstanding experience!

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Alexander Jarencio: G-MEO in Chengdu

My name is Alex, and I am a nursing major at Carroll University in Wisconsin. My family originally came from the Philippines, and is now based in Chicago.

In all honesty, China wasn’t my first pick when I thought of a study abroad, but after some convincing I am so humbled by the amazing experience I have had here. Honestly I would not have picked anything better, the people are friendly, and the memories are timeless.

I have met so many people and experienced so many different things. It has opened my eyes not only to culture, but to different lifestyles and new opinions. I have also realized that there is so much more to learn about yourself when you travel. I have learned to let things go and to move on, and to appreciate things that come into my life. Everything is fleeting, and should be appreciated while it lasts.

Here I am on the subway with new friends that I have made!

This is me levitating at the Wenshu Monastery!

This is near the Giant Buddha.  I just thought this was a cool pic.

Water wars with friends and the locals :)

 

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Stephanie DiLoreto: Unilever Internship in China

My internship at Unilever was one of my favorite experiences with G-MEO and its American Center for Study Abroad, in Chengdu, China.

I  didn’t expect to be so welcomed and included at such a prestigious company, but everyone treated me with respect and kindness.

I worked closely with two people named Ian and Wendy, and Ian took me to various places including paying a visit to some customers and examining their displays. We then determined which customers had strong displays versus weak ones, and I was able to put together a presentation about it on PowerPoint.

I also went to visit chefs with one of Unilever’s saleswomen named Sabrina. We visited two hotels and met with four executive chefs and they let me listen to their conversations and I was able to understand bits and pieces of what they were saying and when I didn’t understand something, Sabrina translated for me. I also learned some useful skills on Excel. I was given a little quiz on my previous Excel abilities, and then learned important  skills that the company’s employees need to know.

Overall, I learned so much about marketing and sales and I gained hands on experience while working with an amazing team.

I am so thankful for the opportunity to have been an intern at Unilever in China!

I know I will use what I learned in my future career.

Thank you!

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Teach in China! Andrew’s Experience

When I first came to the Chengdu American Center for Study Abroad, in the Spring of 2014, I was pleasantly surprised.

Most of the classes are small – about 5 to 15 people – and there is a great sense of team spirit. The academic atmosphere is enhanced by being at the Huaxiba Campus of Sichuan University (SCU), one of the top-10 universities in China.

With students (above).

The famous Clock Tower near to our Center, with staff and visitors from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology.

A Public Speaking class (above)

Our Center students with an SCU student.

Also, our Center provides faculty and students with opprtunities to travel within China. For several semesters in a row, we have been given the opportunity to go to Xi’an the ancient capital city.

The Muslim quarter of Xi’an (above).

Also, there is always a new opportunity around the corner – an opportunity for learning more about China, for professional development, and for making a positive contribution on relations between the two countries.

With a Center student and staff member at the Chengdu Sports University.

Being with the Chengdu American Center, faculty are periodically invited to judge English speaking contests in high schools (above), and be a guest lecturer with programs at Sichuan University (below).

Extra-curricular and sporting options are many in Chengdu. Touch rugby is a lot of fun, and so too is tackle rugby.

The Chengdu Pandas, with some Kunming Flying Tigers (above).

Some of us Pandas organized touch rugby day at Sichuan University.

There is a lot happening in China, especially in Chengdu, with 15 million people.

My curiosity drew me to this construction site (above), and I was given a tour (below).

For the curious person, who likes to explore the world, China is a must.

Thank you!

 

 

 

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Austin Returns to China: Alumni Update

Austin Harris, from Carroll University in Wisconsin, came to China in the Spring of 2015. He became a g-MEO campus Ambassarod upon his return to the United States.

Estella Fu (from g-MEO in New York) and Austin Harris, alumnus.

Austin’s experience with the Chengdu American Center changed his life. Now he has immediate plans. In his own words:

First, I will be participating in a month-long retreat at a Buddhist monastery inTaiwan, composed of courses, meditation, and a cultural tour of the island.

After that, I will be heading to Hong Kong to start a full-time position at the Lingnan University, as a Visiting English Tutor in the English Language Support Centre.

The bright lights and big city of Hoong Kong.

Practicing teaching English in Chengdu.

Indeed – Austin Harris completed a successful Spring 2015 semester in Chengdu, and he now finds himself living and working in Hong Kong. Congratulations!

 

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Summer 2016 Newsletter

Summer 2016 was a wonderful experience for all involved!

Our Chengdu American Center for Study Abroad, on the Huaxiba Campus of Sichuan University, hosted 59 students. Interestingly, about one-third of the students were American nationals and two-thirds were Chinese international students returning to China.

We offered 10 different courses at the Center in conjunction with Farleigh Dickinson University (FDU). Our professors arrived from FDU, Norwich University, Arizona State University, Carroll University and Sichuan University.

  • Public Speaking
  • Oral and Written Report
  • Technical Communications
  • Introduction to Philosophy
  • Principles of Marketing
  • Introduction to Microeconomics
  • Introduction to Macroeconomics
  • The Silk Roads
  • Elementary Chinese I
  • Intermediate Chinese I

We hosted guests from the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Indiana.

Our students and visitors from the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Indiana (above).

Our Center connecting to Southwest Jiaotong University. The Center’s Director, Dr. Jingyu Wang (center) and Sara Luo (to her right), with Susan Rochouh of Stevens Insitute of Technology (to her left).

Our Public Speaking course was so popular that we created two separate sections.

Also academically, we added a completely new course this Summer: The Silk Roads. This covered both historical and current issues regarding China’s economic, political and cultural connections.

The Silk Roads class, with Dr. Olga Davis’ Oral and Written Report, visiting the Buddhist Wenshu Monastery. Dr. Kevin Guilfoy explaining Buddhist philosophy (above).

The Silk Roads class at the 4,000 year old Jiansha site of Old Chengdu.

At the Leshan Giant Buddha (above)

This Summer term we also featured an internship with Unilever (below).

Thanks to our active staff and interns, our students also had the option of participating in many Special Events. These are designed to deepen understanding of Chinese culture and to have fun. Some of these events are shown below.

The Chinese art of papercutting.

Tianfu Square

The Du Jiangyan Yoga-Festival (above and below).

At the Bamboo Forest (above and below)

At the Chengdu Museum (above)

Our basketball club (above).

Students at the LiuJiang Ancient Town (above).

U.S. Consul General Raymond Greene addressing students at the Farewell Ceremony, and below with Dr. Olga Davis.

Ni’jah Richardson receiving a certificate from China’s Foreign Affairs Office.

Back home at the Chengdu American Center, Huaxiba Campus of Sichuan University.

Thank you – and we look forward to seeing you here in Chengdu, China!

 

 

 

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Genesis Encarnacion: Beyond Expectations

When I first applied for this program, I didn’t know what to expect as well as I didn’t know if I would enjoy my experience here. I’ve had friends who told me about their experience in this program and how they all enjoyed it and I could only hope my time here would be just as amazing. When I finally did arrive here and now three months later, I can honestly say that my expectations were surpassed. I love China and plan on coming back as often as I can.

The classes I took here were great because they were so small and I was able to learn more and with ease. The professors as well were extremely friendly and willing to help me. What surprised me is that we the students were close to the professors and talked with them and hanged out with them as if we were friends. Back home in the States, the professors were always professional and aloof. The ones I met here were very opening and were part of both our personal and educational life. Also when I met the staff, they were extremely friendly and helpful. Jingyu is a serious woman but at the same time she is a laidback director and provided us with a wonderful experience. Sara and Mandy were always there to help us when we really needed help such as with exchanging money or booking tickets to a trip to Beijing. The interns were kind and we made great friends with them and formed a connection. I became close friends with all of them and when I come back I will definitely hang out with them.

Another great thing about the program is that I was able to get an internship and that it was related to my field. I obtained an internship at the Qingsu Vocational School and was assigned to teach the students English. Even though it was a paid internship, it was rewarding in many ways. The kids were full of energy and always friendly and eager to learn. At first they were shy but then they start to get use to you. I also loved how considerate they were. They made us dumplings to eat as well as when it was my birthday they wished me a happy birthday and I didn’t even know they knew it was my birthday. Participating in their field day was also so amazing and plenty of fun because they celebrate it so different from in the United States.

I also participated in English corner in WungJun Campus and that was entertaining. I met many different people there and made great friends with a group of girls from another school. The one I hanged out the most was Lavender and she was so kind and sweet. She showed me and Sabrina a plant garden in Chengdu and when I introduced others from the program she accepted them as well. She showed me where to shop as well as her school and how beautiful it was. I also made friends through the buddy program at the center. We got to sing karaoke together with our new companions and we talked as if we were old friends.

Another amazing trip I took was to Beijing. Honestly, I went there mostly for the sights but it was great to see such history and places I have only seen in books. I got to see and experience them firsthand. However, I can honestly say I prefer Chengdu. It has become my home and it is so relaxed and beautiful. Plus, the food here is like heaven. I never thought I would enjoy it so much and now I don’t ever want to leave such delicious dishes. My favorite by far is Chuan Chuan and I love the beef noodles here. I hope to come back to experience all the food all over again and bring friends to show them how wonderful it is.

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Salma Hbaich: At Home in China

What Will I Remember about China?

The easy answer to a question like this would be: Everything!

I will miss the beautiful lotus pond in the center of the campus and seeing the huge clock tower on the walk to class. I will miss the Muslim Noodle place where the rest of the students and I found our comfort food. I will miss passing by the elderly people exercising and doing Ti Chi in the early hours of the morning.

I will miss the lady at the Wowo convenience store who would get upset when I couldn’t understand what she was trying to say. Without her, I wouldn’t have forced myself to learn the words hot, cold, plastic bag, and other useful shopping phrases.  I will miss going out to get “Chuan Chuan” BBQ with my friends late at night when nothing else was open.

The thing I will probably miss the most about China is constantly meeting new people – both international and local Chinese. Without these people, I would not have enjoyed the experience as much as I did.  Upon my arrival , I immediately met the wonderful students I would be sharing the adventure with.  We all came in the same boat – lost and unsure how these next 3 months in a foreign country would go.  We all had to learn how to communicate and get around the city without knowing our surroundings or speaking/understanding the language.

This undertaking was vital to our personal growth and independence, but initially we had a lot of help from the incredible staff and interns at the Gmeo Center.

I also met great people at the Rui Teng studio where I did my internship. Both my boss and supervisor where quick to make me feel at home and  welcome at their company.  During my adventure, I was able to travel to Beijing, Xi’an, and Jiuzhaigou , but of all of these places, Chengdu was my favorite. Chengdu truly feels like “the home away from home.”

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Sabrina Wicker

Life is not all about digital technology though. Here, enjoying nature in China!

The internship that G-MEO went out of their way to get me was my first internship. It was a bit of a struggle to get, as G-MEO’s internship providers mainly focused on law firms and schools, and only recently had engineering and technology students studying abroad to handle. Eventually I ended up interning at a company in the “Hi-Tech Zone” inChengdu. It was a mobile advertising company who was in the process of branching out their scope and creating a mobile phone application.

Commuting to and from the internship was about an hour and a half total. It seemed long, but since I logged a lot of hours at my internship, the lengthy commute seemed worth it even if I did have to stay on my feet half the time. The ride there was guaranteed to be packed with the midafternoon crowd, and I had to stand with one arm hanging from the dangling rings meant to keep passengers from lurching too much when the train departed and arrived at its various stops. The the metro rides back, taken around 10pm at night, were always devoid of crowds, and I was able to nab a much-desired seat for the trip back instead of standing the whole way.

I was lucky enough to get a mentor at the company who helped me become more or less proficient in Android Studio, a development platform for making Android applications. I had no prior experience with the program, but while I was there I had plenty to do to help me become familiar with it. My mentor guided me through the basics of developing Android mobile applications. A lot of the time he was too busy doing his actual job for the company, so I was left alone with StackOverflow to help solve the problems he tasked me with. Not many coding problems are so obscure that some googling can’t help fix them.

One specific task that took up a good portion of my internship was recreating pages of the mobile app based on a screenshot of the design and their intended functionality. It was frustrating at times, trying to get things to work when I didn’t understand why they weren’t working in the first place, but it really deepened my understanding of both Java and Android app development. By now I’m sure I could string together a functioning application without too much strain.

I learned so much in the weeks I was there. I also learned about Chinese tech work culture. After dinner many employees would socialize by going out to the badminton courts outside the building. I would sit in the smaller side office where the 6 programmers the company had worked, doing my best to understand what the other programmers were talking about as they rattled off tech terms in Chinese. Some of the men were experts in PHP, others Java, others Android (which is based off of Java).

I accomplished a lot in the time I was with them, and I’m thankful for the G-MEO staff who worked so hard to get me an internship position there when it was relatively new territory for them. My time inChinais something I’d never forget. I did a lot more than just my internship, but it contributed so much to my experience inChengdu.

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