National Chung Hsing University
Love has no boundaries. NCHU appealed to the public to assist an exchange student studying in Taiwan
- Aids from the NCHU, including the Office of Student Affairs providing an emergency assistance grant coordinated by the Office of International Affairs, and the NCHU Animal Science Alumni and the NCHU Alumni Center supplied fund.
- The NCHU Office of International Affairs and Animal Science Department helped to promote the event through news advertisement. The donations from Taiwan’s public citizens helped the exchange student raise enough money to pay for her medical cost.
- When the WHO Director-General accused Taiwan of racism, the Ethiopian PhD student supported Taiwan publicly.
After National Chung Hsing University signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Veltech Dr. RR & DR. SR University, India in 2017, there have been 9 Veltech Dr. RR & DR. SR University students coming to the Engineering College and Agriculture and Natural Resources College of National Chung Hsing University for academic cooperation. An Ethiopian student, named Merry, studying in Veltech Dr. RR & DR. SR University as a PhD student is one of these exchange students who has been studying at the Animal Science Department of National Chung Hsing University since September 2019. In March 2020 she felt uncomfortable and went to see a doctor. Unfortunately, she was diagnosed with deep vein thrombosis and uterine fibroid. After an emergency operation, she recovered but faced an astronomical medical fee of around NT$1.45 million.
Since Merry is a short-term exchange student, she could not enjoy the national health insurance in Taiwan; thus, it is necessary for her to pay the full medical fees which she cannot afford even if she sells her house in Ethiopia. Fortunately, the fee was reduced to about NT$930 thousand through emergency funds provided by the Chairman and President of China Medical University and the Social Work Office of China Medical University Hospital. Furthermore, on 24th of March a donation ceremony, held by the National Chung Hsing University, raised approximately NT$230 thousand – donated by the Taiwan chapter of Kiwanis International and China Channel New Resident Economy and Trade Cultural Ange Association. Eventually, the medical fee was paid by the donations from the public amounting to more than NT$700 thousand. Merry herself paid around NT$ 200 thousand.
Even though Merry did not recover fully, she still attended the donation ceremony. During the ceremony, she expressed her appreciation of health care, donations, and assistance from Taiwan. The President of National Chung Hsing University, Fuh-Sheng Shieu, especially thanked assistance from the Social Affairs Bureau of Taichung City Government and all the help from National Chung Hsing University, many organizations, and the public. There is kindness to be found everywhere.
On 8th of April 2020, the Ethiopian WHO Director-General, Tedros, claimed that Taiwanese netizens have been bulling him with ethnic slurs for three months. As an Ethiopian, Merry wrote an open letter to support Taiwan. She says that based on the experience of living in Taiwan, Taiwanese people are not racist but hospitable and friendly. Also, she mentions that an Ethiopian university which she had studied in is arranging academic cooperation with many Taiwan universities including National Chung Hsing University.
Even though Merry’s sickness was one of unfortunate accidents during academic cooperation, National Chung Hsing University has exhibited Taiwan’s kindness and full support for foreign students. With talking to others and their assistance, foreign students will be able to understand the depth of Taiwan’s kindness and warmth.