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Online Orientation for Taiwan Scholarship & Huayu Enrichment Scholarship Recipients

Ministry of Education Taiwan Scholarship recipient, Olga Khalina from Russia, experiencing Taiwan’s tea culture at Pingxi in New Taipei City

At the beginning of each academic year the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Education hold an orientation session to welcome newly arrived students from all around the world who’ve been awarded a Taiwan Scholarship or a Huayu Enrichment Scholarship.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Taiwan and all its universities have instituted and maintain rigorous measures to prevent any spread of the virus, and as a result, universities in Taiwan have been able to continue operating all but normally. But these measures include limiting the number of people attending events and so this year’s orientation was conducted online.

The online orientation included lively presentations outlining essential information about the different scholarships and studying in Taiwan. These were given by student counsellors who are very familiar with overseas students. Anyone who missed details during the orientation can find them in a downloadable booklet on the official website of each scholarship program, together with lots of practical advice about everyday living in Taiwan.

Five former and current scholarship recipients then talked about some of their wonderful experiences studying in Taiwan. Two of them are briefly introduced below. Mirna Mariela Rivera Andino who graduated from the International Business and Trade Program at Ming Chuan University in 2018 was awarded a Ministry of Foreign Affairs Taiwan Scholarship to undertake her bachelor’s degree, and in October this year she became the newly-appointed Nicaraguan Ambassador to Taiwan. Rivera shared details of her time as a student. As well as having excellent academic results, Rivera also actively participated in Taiwanese Ke-Tse Opera activities in her spare time and she’s very aware of the beauty of Taiwan’s traditional culture. She’s an outstanding example of the long-term friendship and between Nicaragua and Taiwan and how both have worked together training and educating people, and she’ll play an important role in future exchanges and bilateral relations.

Another scholarship recipient, Olga Khalina from Russia, speaks fluent Chinese. She’s been teaching Mandarin Chinese in Russia for twelve years and she’s very familiar with Chinese literature and culture and has a profound mastery of the Chinese language. Olga is doing research for her PhD at National Taiwan University on a Ministry of Education Taiwan Scholarship. She’s joined the calligraphy, tea culture, Chinese painting, and guqin (a plucked 7-string instrument) student clubs at the university to better understand and appreciate traditional Chinese culture, and she encourages anyone interested in traditional Chinese culture to come and study in Taiwan. They’ll find a wealth of research resources here.

Taiwan is a friendly nation that advocates freedom and democracy, and it has an abundant diversity of culture. It also offers excellent quality higher education, and these are some of the reasons that Taiwan is the study destination of many international students.

The government provides a range of scholarships to encourage outstanding international students to study in Taiwan and thereby enhance exchanges, mutual understanding, and friendship between Taiwan and the world. This year the Ministry of Education awarded 440 Taiwan Scholarships to international students to begin a degree program in Taiwan, and 470 Huayu Enrichment Scholarships to undertake up to a year of language studies at a Chinese language center affiliated with a university here.