NATIONAL TAICHUNG UNIVERSITY OF EDUCATION
YONG HUI WEN
Towards the end of the summer of 2014, I packed up all my stuff and left my country for the first time. I was traveling from Malaysia to Taiwan for my four-year degree in Language and Literacy Education. I was excited yet anxious at the same time, for I was about to step into a brand-new place all by myself.
Never have I expected such a heartfelt welcome upon landing in Taiwan. When I arrived at Taoyuan Airport, I was greeted with a big sweet smile. She was a senior who was also an international student from my new school in Taiwan – National Taichung University of Education. She was full of energy and enthusiasm! She offered to carry my super-heavy luggage and took me all the way from Taoyuan to Taichung. She even taught me many useful skills that I will need to live out there on my own. She later introduced me to some other freshmen who arrived at the school earlier and brought me out to get some daily supplies. Since then, I know I have nothing to worry about because there will be many teachers and friends who will always be there to help me like a family.
During my second year in university, I had an experience that I would never forget. It happened during a physical education class. The weather that day was scorching hot and we were doing aerobic exercises. We had to dance for quite a long time. When the class has finally ended, I wasn’t feeling well. I felt dizzy and nauseated. I was in trouble because I felt so weak that I couldn’t walk back to my hostel which was a 10-minutes-walk from my PE classroom. My roommates were all panicking and didn’t know how to help me. When I was about to pass out, a female motorcyclist who was passing by saw us and offered to send me back to my hostel. On the way back, I felt so nauseated that I ended up vomiting on her motorcycle. It was such an embarrassing moment! When I was feeling much better, I found myself lying on my bed in my room safely, while the kind motorcyclist had left for a long time. I felt so bad for not being able to thank her for her help. All I can do was to pray for her kindness with my thankful heart.
The National Taichung University of Education provided me with one of the best courses for my profession. I studied in the Department of Language and Literacy Education which offered both education courses and Chinese language courses. In the first two years, our course focused mainly on building our foundation. We had subjects such as History of Chinese Literature, Introduction to Linguistics, Chinese Etymology, and many others during those two years. In the third and fourth year, we had subjects that were more practical such as Teaching Practice, Theory and Practice of Writing Instruction, Design of Language Arts Curriculum and Teaching, etc. Besides that, there were other subjects that enhanced our understanding of Chinese such as Selected Classical Novels, Chinese Lexicology and Scholium, Selected Modern Proses, etc. The teachers and professors were all very dedicated resourceful. Their teachings were a huge inspiration to me which also prepared me for my career in education today.
Many juniors have asked me about my university life in Taiwan, and I’ve always given them the same answer. “I will cry like there is no tomorrow if you ask me to leave my school, and leave Taiwan” That clearly shows how much I’ve enjoyed my university life in Taiwan. Indeed, living alone away from home was challenging, but by overcoming all the challenges, I have earned valuable life experiences and skills which enabled me to broaden my perspective. I have learned to think outside the box, be flexible, and be creative. During my years at university, I joined many different clubs such as the Oversea Chinese and International Students Club, Ballroom Dance Club, Student Association of my department, and Student Union. Each one of them expanded my social capabilities and gave me awesome experiences. I spent half of my university life in clubs, and they rewarded me with many priceless memories. Not to mention the amazing culture exchange trip to Korea on my third summer in Taiwan. I am truly grateful to NTCU for giving me the chance to visit Korea for the ten-days-trip. I got to know many new friends from both my university and Korea Seoul National University of Education. It was a very meaningful trip and also one of the best experiences I had in my university life!
Having to leave Taiwan and my university was hard, but not sad. I am very content and grateful for my four years at NTCU. Thanks, Taiwan! Thanks, NTCU! May Taiwan continues to shine, like a diamond glowing with beauty on the outside, yet remain sane and wise on the inside!