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Canadian Students Further Their Education in Taiwan

Ms. Grace Shu-fen Ou, Director of Education Division at TECO in Vancouver was recently interviewed by the local media outlet, Georgia Straight, for an education story about 5 Canadian students who travelled to Taiwan and experienced Taiwanese culture.

During the spring break last year, Tina Tsai, a Mandarin teacher at Burnaby South Secondary School took five students in her Mandarin class on a two-week trip to Taiwan to give them real-life opportunities to practice their Mandarin skills. Tina Tsai was born in Taipei and she wanted her to experience Taiwan’s culture first-hand and apply the knowledge they learned in class to real-life experiences.

The students, in grades 9 to 12, had met every Tuesday after school for two hours to prepare for this trip. Once they arrived in Taiwan, they had to use Mandarin to buy tickets, ask for directions, and read maps, and to make it specially interesting, she gave each student the challenge of taking turn to act as tour guide for everyone else, and leading the group to see particular sites around Taipei, the capital city

The students all considered it to have been a very valuable experience. One young lady, then in grade 12, went on to study second-year Mandarin in her first year of university and is now planning to spend a year in China or Taiwan to continue improving her Mandarin skills. Another student planned to take a graduation trip with friends to different parts of Asia. A third student on the trip later went on a one-year exchange to Germany: his experience in Taiwan made him feel independent and comfortable about taking on the one-year overseas exchange while he was still in high school.

This is just one of several ways that Canadian students can further their education in Taiwan. TECO in Vancouver can provide details about the Taiwan Scholarships – to undertake a degree in Taiwan – and the Huayu Enrichment Scholarships to study Mandarin in Taiwan, both offered by the Taiwanese government to encourage Canadian students to study in Taiwan.

Young Canadians between the ages of 18 and 35 can also get a one-year visa to go on a working holiday in Taiwan through the Youth Mobility Program. The main purpose of the trip must be an internship, work placement, pre-employment training, or working to supplement existing financial resources while travelling in Taiwan.