UK college students start journey to east
Updated: 2017-04-13

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Mei Bing, vice president of East China Normal University, speaks at the opening ceremony of the Study China Program on April 3. The program provides students from the United Kingdom three-week study experiences in China. [Photo provided to study-shanghai.org]

The curtain was raised on the annual Study China Program, providing students from the United Kingdom three-week study experiences in the eastern part of China, at East China Normal University (ECNU) on April 3.

The UK visiting group, led by Professor Johannes Lotze from the University of Manchester (UM), received warm welcomes from their Chinese counterparts.

Mei Bing, vice president of ECNU, briefed the guests on the school's history, development and academic stature. He looked forward to their better understanding of China's language, culture and business, and extended best wishes for their enjoyable living and studying experiences in Shanghai.

UK student representative Samuel Jack and Chinese volunteer Jiang Mengwei also expressed their appreciation for the event.

To help ease the students' initial shyness, an icebreaking party was held where they were invited to join in various games like musical chairs and using chopsticks to move glass marbles from one plate to another.

An intercollegiate tradition between ECNU and UM, the Study China Program is funded by the UK government to enhance collaboration between students from the two countries. Since its inauguration in 2008, the event has welcomed 10 groups totaling more than 1,200 students for an Asian experience.

This year's event attracted 87 students to start their "journey to the east" during the most beautiful spring season. Aside from learning Chinese language and experiencing traditional culture, the students will take field trips to the Shanghai Museum, the Bund and the neighboring city of Zhenjiang in Jiangsu province.

A group of 20 volunteers from ECNU will support the foreigners' studying and living in Shanghai.

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Members and volunteers of the Study China Program pose for a group photo. [Photo provided to study-shanghai.org]

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