Providence University is located in Taichung (Taiwan).
Providence University was founded by an American congregation, the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods (Indiana, United States). In the summer of 1919, Bishop Joseph Tacconi of Kaifeng, Henan Province, mainland China, met with Sisters of Providence general superior Mother Mary cleophas Foley to request sisters for a school for young women in Kaifeng. In 1921 Mother Marie Gratia Luking (1885-1964) and five other Sisters of Providence founded the Hua-Mei Girls' Elementary and High Schools there, one of the first schools for girls in China. In the spring of 1929, the school was forced to close because of political turbulence.
The Providence Sisters, enthusiastic about female education, endeavored to etablish another school in spite of the critical situation. In 1932, by the effort of the Board of Trustees, Ching-Yi Girls' High School was instituted in Kaifeng. Cardinal Paul Yu Pin was the first chairperson of the Board of Trustees, and Chi-Liang Ing was the first president of the school. In 1942, Mother Gratia and the other sisters were imprisoned and did not regain their freedom until 1945. Il 1948, the war between the Kuomintang Party and the Communist Party forced the sisters to retreat first to Shangai and later to Taiwan.
Mission of Providence University
It's important to talck about the mission of Providence University because true that we are able to see an important aspect of the school. In what the school belive.
Providence University try every day to assist students in the development of lifelong values, research, and critical thinking skills so that they may effect positive changes in society ...
Providence University as a Catholic University has Christian inspiration and it pursues the following goals :
-Reflection of Knowledge in the light of Faith
-Fidelity to Christian Message as expressed in the Catholic Tradiction
-Institutional commitment to the service of the people.
It's a nice campus which offers a lot of facilities : dormitory, swimming pool, gym etc ...
Providence University has two dormitories. St Bosco Hall (Si Gao Xue Yuan) is Male Domitor. Schultz Hall (Xi Jia Xue Yuan) is Female Dormitory.
At the beginning, my plans were to stay in the girls dormitory, so inside the campus. But when i did some research about it, i found that there were a lot of rules to respect. Rules also due to the Taiwanese way of life, or mentality.
For exemple, we don't have the right to leave the dorm after 10:30 at night. We are also not allowed to bring guest in our room.
All those rules appears to me dificult to respect because of the independance that i'm use to have at home or in Lyon. So i decided to take an appartment next to the university with a exchange student who was also looking for an appartment. This exchange student is mexican and has a good level in English, i thought that it was a great opportunity for me to improve my English all day.
Welcoming and integration
The welcoming in Providence University was really great. We had of course some presentation of the teachers, director etc.. And also all the group of students in charge of the exchange students.
The taiwanese people are really friendly so that make the integration easyer. First, to help our integration, every exchange students had a "family" with other exchange. A family was compose of 6 student, all of them from different coutries. After every family went to have lunch together and learn more about each other. That was a great way to integrate ourselves in the university.
A lot of different activities were propose, such as sports, visits or shopping... Besides, the first day, the admistration brought all of the exchange students for a tour of Taichung city, to know the place to go, the good restaurants, where to do shopping, where was the Bank and all that stuff. That was really convenient for after, so i must insist on the fact that our integration and welcoming was great and perfectly done to permit us to start a great semester.
At the beginning of the semester i had to choose four classes. I took :
- Cultural classes
-Politic of Taiwan
-Cinema and culture about Taiwan
And as a foreign student, i have to fallow chinese classes, three times a week for two hours.
I took this class because it was the only one related with my studies that i follow at l'ESDES. In this class I learn different aspect of marketing ( i already know a lot of them due to l'ESDES) and as well i have a lot of presentation to do, almost every week. So this class is devided in 2 parts : Presentation first, and then lessons.
It's really interesting because in this class we study business but all the students are from different places of the world, so we don't always have the same vision of business and we share all the differences between our country.
As an exemple, one of my presention was to present the most famous brand in France, it was really funny that some of my classmates never heard about thoses brands. And France have a lot of famous luxury brands like : Louis Vuitton, Dior ... As the opposithe of some other country like Mexico.
All that to say that this class is great because it offers another view of business. Business but all over the world. We can observe that with all the different presentation that we do about business in OUR country.
I already know that for the final examen, I have to think about the implantation of a product of Taiwan in France and explain all the implantation. Like why this product, why it can work in Taiwan, where .. etc. I'm really looking forward to start working on it because it's a really good topic.
The teacher explain us a lot of aspects of Brand management. Brand Management is a communication function that includes analysis on how that brand is positioned in the market, which target public the brand is targeted at, and maintaining a desired reputation of the brand. Developing a good relationship with target publics is essential for Brand Management. Tangible elements of brand management include the product itself, look, price, the packaging, etc. Our class is focus on all this aspects of Brand Management.
Politic and economy in Taiwan
This class is my favorite one! We are lucky to have a great teacher who has a great level in English and who loves what he is doing. As you can guess with the title, we learn Politic and economy. Taiwan's politic is really interesting, due to this class I understand much better the culture and i think the history of a country is primordial to understand well the country.
This class is a moment to gather between the exchange student who are following this class and some taiwanese.
We have some presentation every week to introduce our country and share the difference. It can be about class, food, traditions, festivals etc
I learn a lot with this class, it was another way for me to understand even better the tawainese culture but on the top of that all the culture of the exchange student! Indonesia, German, American, japanese, Spanish ...
This class is about the analys of taiwanese movie. We watch a lot of movie that reflects the culture of Taiwan or the history.
Cultural differencies in the classroom
The taiwanese behaviour in the classroom is really opposite to europeans.
The main difference is that taiwanese students don't participate in class, never. They are all really shy and the teacher respect that. Due to that, you will never see debate in a taiwanese classroom. Besides, one day i remember a teacher asking a question to the clasroom, a full classroom but no one answered. Even if they knew the answer. That appeard to me like a huge difference.
On top of that, the teacher doesn't really matter of you're behaviour in the class. You can eat, you can arrive 10mn before the end of the class, stay with your phone all the class, the teacher will never reprimand you. He just consider that it's your own business not his.
The Taiwanese loves to party but study hard as well! It's easy to have fun as an exchange student it taiwan, the country offers a lots of clubs, bars ..
We are ofter inform about the different fesivals and we can also participate to a lot of excusions to get to know better the country, it can be some famous landmarks of Taiwan or some food specialities ...
The Taiwanese also do a lot of sports as in the campus you have a lot of facilities that permit you to practice every day and find the sport you're good at it or that you simply like.
When I started my university i was really excited of discovering Taiwan. Because my university is not so well located so i wanted to go and visit some other countries in taiwan.
So my german friend and I decided to travel a little around Taiwan, especialy in the south of taiwan.
I went to a beautiful park in Tainan, it's one of the oldest and most central park in the city, it's a wonderful traditional garden, and a peace of Tainan history. It offers a look into local culture, fresh plant life and and city history.
I also visited Anping fort. The building was originally constructed in square inner fortress and rectangle outer walls. In 1661, the fort was renamed as Anping to commemorate his home town when Cheng Cheng-Kung has driven the Dutch out of Taiwan. Anping fort is the first fort of Taiwan, so it was really interisting to visit it and to learn more about taiwan history.
The next day i went to Kaohsiung. I arrived in the morning to have some time to visit the city all day. First, I went to the Dragon and Tiger Pagodas which is a temple located at lotus lake. The temple was etablished in 1976. It has a dragon and a tiger, which makes it popular and as a special temple. According to legend, entering the dragon's mouth and coming out from the tiger's mouth is an auspicious symbol. This building represents Kaohsiung traditional culture. I was really suprised by the design of this architecture.
After we went to take a ferry near by and to discover a really nice island just next to Kaochuing.
Food in taiwan
There is a huge difference between Taiwanese food and French food. Their difference can be seen by the different history of the two countries, by the outside food that is opposite and also by the frequency and importance of lunch which is not the same.
The French food refers to cooking traditions originating from France in the opposite of Taiwan's food which is often associated with influences from mid to southern pronvinces of mainland China. You can also find a Japanese influence due to the period when Taiwan was under Japanese rule.
Taiwanese food has also been influenced by it's geographic location. It's an island so a lot of the food you can find is seafood.
The beef noodle soup is one of the most popular dishes in Taiwan.
The other difference is the outside food. In Taiwan people usally eat on the street. Actually, Taiwan's best known snacks are present in the night markets. Street vendors sells a variety of different foods.
If you're looking for Taiwanese food the best place to go are the numerous night markets all over the city. Night markets are full of traditional Taiwanese snacks.. I must admet that some of them appear strange. For exemple you can eat frog soup or chicken testicles.. I didn't tried those one. But eating street food in the evening is part of the culture.
You often find some stinky tofu, Taiwanese sausages, steamed and fried dumplings, buns, fried chiken... At the beginning it's really difficult to eat the Taiwanese food and especially to get use to it ..
But now that i spent a few month in Taiwan i learned to like lot of their dishes.
First the fried chicken is my favorite course. ( Xiang Xiang Ji )
This savoury chiken was founded at Taichung in 1973, almost 40 years in the business!
I also really like Dumpling
Dumplings are cooked balls of dough. They are based on flour, potatoes or bread and may include meat, fish, vegetables or sweets. They may be cooked by boiling, steaming, simmering or baking.
Dumplings have to be sweet or savoury! They can be eaten by themselves, in soups for exemple or in other way.
Those dumplings exists in a lot of other countries but has a different aspects. In asia, the common dumpling consists of meat and vegetables.
Taiwan is also famous for having some of the best tea in the region. in fact in Europe, we always drink coffee but here it's only tea! All the time! You can find the Bubble tea or Oolong green tea, really famous here.
Importance and frequency of lunch
In taiwan, people usually eat when they are hungry. They can eat several time a littile on the day. And there choose one thing to eat that's it. They are less strict with the hours than us.
Taiwanese also don't eat with their parents. In France lunch is more a moment to gather and enhoy the meal than in Taiwan. ( Except for special events)