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NPUST Hosts Vacation School

新南向假日學校開幕

Students from Thailand were on “vacation” for two weeks at Taiwan’s National Pingtung University of Science and Technology as part of a new program which has been created to give students from Thailand a chance to learn new language skills and experience different cultures.

Running from October 28th to November 11th, the “Thailand Vacation School Culture Camp for Language Learning” was developed by the NPUST Office of International Affairs and the Chinese Language Center in response to the Ministry of Education’s New Southbound Vacation School Project.

An opening ceremony for activity was held on October 29th at the Second Meeting room at the university’s Administrative Building with the Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Chung-Ruey Yen, the Director of the Language Center, Dr. Han-sheng Wang, and Dean of the Office of International Affairs, Dr. Pomin Li, present to welcome the students.

Nineteen Thai students coming from Rajamangala University of Technology Lanna, Maejo University, Thammasat University, and Mahasarakham University participated in the vacation school program. The program involved a set of activities that were designed to help students diversify their approach to academics and expand their fields of view by cultivating “cross-domain thinking”.

For 14 days, the students had a chance to improve their Chinese language skills, experience new cultures and get acquainted with the NPUST approach to higher education. Field trips were organized to a variety of attractions where students could observe historic and culturally significant architecture and also enjoy some of Taiwan’s natural mountain and seaside beauty. The activities followed the approach of “learning while doing and doing while learning”, integrating language studies with cultural experiences and incorporating some of the local style and features of NPUST. The students were introduced to Hakka and aboriginal culture, tried out local cuisine, and got familiar friendly life philosophy of southern Taiwan.

NPUST’s development has been centered on tropical agriculture, biotechnology and Green engineering and the agriculture program offered by the school has already earned a world-wide reputation. NPUST Vice-President Chung-Ruey Yen said that the number of of foreign students applying to NPUST has been continuously growing. From the year of its establishment in 1924 to the present, NPUST has had more than 1800 foreign students coming from 50 countries enroll in its programs. The number of foreign students registered at the university in 2017 constituted more than a third of that total, with 750 students representing 40 countries on the books. Under the New Southbound Policy (NSP), the largest representation of foreign students is coming from Malaysia, followed by Thailand. NPUST also has a significant number outstanding Thai alumni who have gone on to see considerable success in academic, business and governmental sectors in Thailand. 

This academic year (2018), 498 international students coming from 14 NSP countries are enrolled in formal studies or taking part in short term exchanges at NPUST. Hopes are that the vacation school, which has attracted 19 students from four of NPUST’s sister-schools in Thailand, will not only allow students expand their fields of view and get more acquainted with Taiwan, but will also inspire them to return to NPUST in the future to continue their education at the university.

 

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