Management student Jessie, from the University of Cambridge, spent one month in summer 2018 volunteering as an English teacher in Beijing.
How was your experience on the program?
Having signed up to the camp both to gain international work experience and to meet lots of people and have fun, I was thrilled at what the camp had to offer.
Through teaching I was able to take on responsibility, leading my own lessons, as well as bonding with the kids in extracurricular activities including an amazing waterfight, and I learnt valuable skills from them too, from the dance routine of ‘what makes you beautiful’ to basic mandarin.
Aside from this, the teachers themselves were a great crew who I was very glad to spend time with, going with them on trips including the great wall, summer palace and Ming tombs.
Would you recommend the program to a friend and why?
Yes absolutely, both for the work experience, the fun and the personal growth opportunities it leads to.
What did you learn from taking part in the program?
Apart from getting an insight into Chinese language and culture, I learnt a lot about leadership from planning and delivering lessons, as well as resilience and adaptability when things don’t go to plan!
How will the program help with your future career/ studies?
Flexibility, leadership and ability to adapt to new work environments are useful skills sought by almost any employer.
What was your favourite/ most memorable moment?
The travelling we were able to do between camps was absolutely amazing.
On one of our days off, I went with a small group of teachers into the centre, where we had a day full of the ups and downs of travelling, from just missing the opening times of Mao’s tomb and getting stranded in the pouring rain, to exploring the hutongs and sampling street food around lunchtime, to taking a boat trip around the iconic summer palace in the evening.