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Students
From

North America

Name: Tom Cowart
Duration: May 2011
Profession: Real Estate Appraiser
Languages spoken: English
Hobbies: Fishing, Reading

Our Community
Q: What program did you enroll in? Has the program been what you expected?
A: Private course in Beijing Mandarin House.
Absolutely great, the instructors are very knowledgeable and patient.
Q: What do you find most interesting about Shanghai?
A: New Year’s and Spring Festival. I also have taken side trips to Taiyuan and Chengdu.
Q: What advice/tips would you give to future students who plan to study in China?
A: Try to prepare in advance, always be respectful of others, be patient and learn the subway system.
Don’t be afraid to go into the street/public alone and start talking Chinese, no matter what your level of ability. Immerse yourself.
 

Name: Sally Bardayan
Duration: January 11 to December 10, 2010
Profession:
Student
Languages spoken: English and Spanish
Hobbies: Read, travel, take pictures, go shopping, play basketball, ride motorcycles.

Our Community
Q: How are you finding your studies in China ?
I find them super nice. I like that the apartments are just one block away from the school. I like how there are people from everywhere and I have many new international friends.
Q: What program did you enroll in? Has the program been what you expected?
A: Intensive program for a year. It has been much better than I expected! In the first week, I knew how to introduce my family!
Q: What do you find most interesting about Shanghai?
A:
Its culture and its people. I like the Pudong Skyline at night, its so beautiful! The Fake Market is awesome, I'm definitely going there before I go back to Panama so I can buy nice stuff for my friends and family members!
Q: Tell us a few of your most memorable experiences in China so far?
A: I can believe how very cheap everything is here. I went to this restaurant and I had my dinner and when it was time to pay I thought there was a mistake in the bill! The food was delicious and it was so cheap! I go there all the time now haha.
Q: What advice/tips would you give to future students who plan to study in China?
A: I would tell them to come so learn this magnificent language that will help them so much in their future. I think it brings many new opportunities. If you want to learn mandarin for your career or just for the sake of it, this is definitely the place to be.
 
Family From Florida Sarasota to Beijing


June 22 to July 31, 2009

Our Community
Mother Name:
Liliana Concha-Toro
Hobbies:
Dancing, Biking, Reading

Our Community
Son Name:

Gregorio Concha-Toro
Hobbies:
Study, Playing drum, Jazz
  Interview with Gregorio
Q: Is this your first time in China ?
A: ԣҵһй
Q: How are you finding your studies in China?
A: ĵķѣ﷨ԣ﷨ĵ﷨ѵöࣩҺϲѧϰģҲdzϲ Mandarin House ʦǺ nice Ҳ strict. That pushed me to study.
If you really want to study Chinese, homestay is very important. My homestay is very very good. We do a lot of things together in the evening and weekends. We play poke, majiang... I not only practice my Chinese but also know a lot of culture. That's great. I hope when I come back next year, I can stay with the same family.
Q: What advice/tips would you give to others who plan to come and study in China ?
A: Stay with the Chinese family and come here for long time. Two weeks staying is not enough to know the real culture and life.
  Interview with Liliana
Q: Is this your first time in China?
A: No, I came to China in 1986.
Q: How are you finding your studies in China?
A: Incredible, not only for the knowledge or the Chinese language but for the understanding of the Chinese culture.
Q: Has the program been as you expected?
A: Everybody at MH did a terrific job. The teachers are fantastic and the girls at the front desk very kind.
Q: How do you feel about Beijing?
A: The sense of community. How safe it is, and the quality of life.
Q: What advice/tips would you give to others who plan to come and study in China ?
A: China is a giant in motion. I'm sure it is going in the right direction, to become the major economy in the world. China is very diverse, its gastronomy, ethnic group, regions. All these make it an interesting place to visit.
 

Name: Eddie Boyd
Age: 17 years old
Duration:
June 21 to July 18, 2009
Hobbies: Music,Film

Our Community
Q: How are you finding your studies in China?
A: Good. Lots of time to learn words and lots of time to practice around other teachers. Very fun. Teachers are all very friendly.
Q: What do you find most interesting about Shanghai ?
A: How everyone is so friendly and I can practice everyday.
Q: Tell us a few memorable experiences in China ?
A: Being able to use the Mandarin I have learned during a massage treatment.
Q: What advice/tips would you give to others who plan to come and study in China ?
A: Always be open to new things and try to always practice what you learn, and be friendly.
 
Name: Jesse Weisbeck ׼
Duration: June 8 to July 31, 2009
Hobbies: ӰУ
Our Community
Q: Is this your first time in China?
A: The third time.
Q: How are you finding your studies in China?
A: I think the facilities are nice and the teachers are friendly and engaging. Shanghai is a good Chinese-learning environment, but it isn't what I would call a very traditional Chinese area, being that there are so many foreigners around and thus a lot of foreign cultures too.
Q: What do you find most interesting about Shanghai ?
A: The mix of old and new, foreign and local cultures.
Q: Tell us a few memorable experiences in China ?
A: One memorable experience is strolling around the small alleys and markets in Shanghai's Old Quarter near Yu Yuan Gardens. I really got a chance to speak Chinese with local folks and see a lot of local food culture in the markets. The people are very friendly and the sights and sounds are very unique. Another memorable time was visiting Tai Kang road and visiting the contemporary art galleries. I think this area represents an interesting side of contemporary Chinese culture in Shanghai. The shops and art on Tai Kang road show a wonderful side of modern China.
Q: What advice/tips would you give to others who plan to come and study in China ?
A: I feel strongly that if one's goal is to understand some of the culture, one should spend as much time as possible in China and take things slowly. If on a short trip to Shanghai, say less than three months, it is enough to learn basic language and make contacts. However, to communicate well and live independently in China, I think it requires a long-term commitment of a few years.
 
Name: Chris Bell
Duration: May 3 to June 27, 2009
Profession: Consultant
Hobbies:
Travel, hiking, reading, playing rugby
Our Community
Q: Is this your first time in China?
A: No, I came to China for 2 weeks back in 2007 and visited Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou.
Q: How are you finding your studies in China?
A: Great. Mandarin is a very difficult language and the courses move very quickly, but the teachers are very patient and I am making a lot of progress every day and every week.

Q: Has the program been as you expected ?
A: The Mandarin house does a great job with all aspects of the experience. The classes and teachers are great, the extracurricular activities are a lot of fun, the staff is really friendly and helpful. It has exceeded all of my expectations.

Q: What do you find most interesting about Shanghai ?
A: How can you fit so many people into one city? It is amazing to me that all of these people are able to coexist in one place. It makes for a very unique experience where you can find or do just about anything your heart desires.
Q: Tell us a few memorable experiences in China ?
A: Going out at night is always a good time, they have some amazing bars & clubs here. I've also had a couple great day trips with my friends from Mandarin house to both Suzhou and Hangzhou. Both beautiful towns, but the trip was the real experience - taking the train, navigating the public bus systems, meeting locals and asking for directions. It's a lot of fun to use what you've learned to get around and see the sights.
Q: What advice/tips would you give to others who plan to come and study in China ?
A: Get ready to work hard and have fun. Try to come with an open mind, especially in regards to food. Duck tongues aren't bad but I wasn't wild about bone marrow.
 
Name: Jeffrey Cheng
Duration: April 4 to May 2, 2009
Profession: Engineer
Hobbies: travel, handball
Our Community
Q: Is this your first time in China?
A: Yes, first time in mainland China .
Q: How are you finding your studies in China?
A: The studies are challenging, but the pace is good.

Q: Has the program been as you expected?
A: Yes, the program fulfilled my expectations.

Q: What do you find most interesting about Shanghai?
A:
I like the breathtaking views of Pudong and Puxi from the Shanghai World Financial Center . Shanghainese food tastes very good as well. It is a very international city.

Q: Tell us a few memorable experiences in China?
A: I will remember visiting the science/technology museum and the urban planning center. I will also remember the nightlife and bars by the Bund.

Q: What advice/tips would you give to others who plan to come and study in China?
A: Bring an adventurous spirit and make time for sightseeing.
 
Name: Taras M. Czebiniak
Duration: Sep 22 to Nov 14, 2008
Profession
: Student
Hobbies: International travel, classical music,
reading about science and technology,
SCUBA diving, watching television
Our Community
Q: How are you finding your studies in China?
A: I have really been enjoying my studies. I came to Shanghai with certain goals for my language development and I think that I have met those. Among them has been to gain a working familiarity with Chinese characters, and by studying them in parallel with the regular intensive Mandarin House course I feel that I have really progressed. Not only that, but I also find the city that much more accessible when you can recognize a certain number of basic characters. I found that there is so much to learn while studying Chinese that I never had a chance to be bored! It was a rewarding challenge to balance my studies with exploration of the city.
Q: What do you find most interesting about Shanghai?
A: Shanghai is such a fascinating city where ancient China meets modern world-class metropolis. The striking skyline is one of the most magnificent I can imagine, and I am at a loss to explain the magnetism that it emits. Walking through Shanghai, you inevitably walk through a city of contrasts: cultural, economic, linguistic, culinary. There is so much to see and explore, and I found myself often pondering not only China's place within the international order but also my own. I can certainly say that living in Shanghai for two months opened my views of not only China but also of where I want to take my graduate studies and career. Shanghai is truly a magnificent place for both external exploration and introspection.
Q: What advice/tips would you give to others who plan to come and study in China?
A: I would advise anyone considering study in China to come armed with an open mind, lots of patience, and the ability to find enjoyment in unexpected places. China is so different from the West but it has developed a system that works - you just have to persevere in discovering it daily in little ways. Studying Chinese can be frustrating at times because of all the different accents and manners of speaking - but each interaction adds to your knowledge and prepares you for the next. Sometimes you might come across hardships or the lack of the amenities at home, but when you see these moments as chances to appreciate cultural differences you will find yourself missing China's own unique amenities when you return home!
 
Name: Brett Dubroy
Duration: Oct 5 to Nov 1, 2008
Profession
: Software Architect / Team Lead
Languages spoken:
English, French, Learning Mandarin
Our Community
Q: How are you finding your studies in China?
A: I had an absolutely fantastic experience studying in China. The combination of studying and being immersed in the culture can't be beat.
Q: What do you find most interesting about Shanghai?
A: I love the combination of old and new and the culture. And the food is amazing!
Q: What advice/tips would you give to others who plan to come and study in China?
A: Keep an open mind, talk with the people that live in the city, they are normally very happy that you are trying, take in as much of the culture as you can. Most of all get out and experience life in China!
 
Name: Margit Zwemer
Duration: Mar 18 to Mar 23, 2007
                Oct 21 to Dec 23, 2007
Profession: Student
Hobbies: Travel, Hiking, The Shanghai Fabric Market
Our Community
Q: How are you finding your studies in China?
A: Very interesting, you can experience so much more of the city when you can speak the language.
Q: What do you find most interesting about Shanghai?
A: The way it changes every single day.
Q: What advice/tips would you give to others who plan to come and study in China?
A: Don't ask for the English menu, just point to whatever the guy at the next table is having.
 
Name: Coman Mihaela Alcmena
Duration: Sep 25 to Oct 20, 2006
Profession:
Student (dance teacher & model)
Hobbies:
Dancing, swimming and reading
Our Community
Q: How are you finding your studies in China?
A: I think that being in China helps me learn mandarin much faster than if I would try to learn it in my own country. It's not an easy language to learn; therefore it helps a lot to be submerged in it.
Q: What do you find most interesting about Shanghai?
A: I find it very interesting that it's such an international city and yet it retains its traditional Chinese culture. I love to see the two mix.
Q: What advice/tips would you give to others who plan to come and study in China?
A: I think they should be prepared for a culture change. They should embrace the differences while they are here. If they come here open minded they will absolutely love it.
 
Name: Nadege Lespinasse
Profession:
Project Manager
Hobbies:
Traveling, shopping, white water rafting
Our Community
Q: How are you finding your studies in China?
A: They were intensive, I would not have gotten as far had I not come to china, my studies are very applicable.
Q: What do you find most interesting about Beijing?
A: Development of city, mixture of architectural old next to new, it is a forward moving city very good energy.
Q: What advice/tips would you give to others who plan to come and study in China?
A: Don't over pack, there is plenty to buy here; Make sure you have check card, cash is used most often; Take chance and try the food from the street vendors; One funny bit of advice to my fellow black (African) Americans, the words for "this" and "that" are "zhege" and "nage" which may sound offensive but are totally innocent..
 
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