Thursday, 7 May 2015

UPDATE from Shelley Tien, our former International Office Ambassador for Taiwan


Shelley graduated from The University of Sheffield in 2012 with a MA in Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language

 After graduating from Sheffield, I officially entered the colourful world as a career lady. I taught Mandarin in Lancaster, Sheffield and Manchester and had a great time travelling around the Europe. After enjoying a wonderful journey, I returned to Taiwan to begin my job at CommonWealth Magazine Group.

My position requires huge amount of efforts working with educators and media, planning for marketing and fundraising campaigns, and talking to the public. I think I can do it confidently is benefitted from the experiences in the International Office. When I was part of the International Office Ambassador team, we planned and conducted the university career fairs and orientation activities together with the International Office alumni, and contacted with prospect students and guided them around the campus. From these experiences, I practiced how to link between the university and the students from so many places and give helpful suggestions, and I learned the skills to talk to people under different occasions. 

As more English universities and schools started to provide Mandarin classes for pupils, qualified Mandarin teachers are in a growing demand. Mostly, the entry standards for Mandarin instructors should have a related degree, PGCE/QTS certificates and preferably some teaching experiences in the UK. The MA in Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language is only provided by SOAS and Sheffield. Our programme enables me to meet all the professional requirements to teach here with lower expenses, and our teachers are keen to build the bridge between England schools and we prospect teachers. We also have Confucius Institute and Star Mandarin School where we could connect with local teachers and the children. Due to the abundant resources and practices, after I graduated, I was given the opportunities to teach in the universities, local primary schools and Chinese schools.

My department offered us many chances to communicate with foreign students and experienced teachers, so that we can learn from each other and keep good relationships even till now.

Our university brand, discovery, is always in my mind. This motto encourages us to learn with an open mind, to explore with knowledge and to discover without fear. One of my favourite quotes is "dream bigger dream". It was written on poster of a children wearing doctor's white coat with a confident smile. The image vividly appeared in my mind that we Sheffield graduates persuade our dreams with different gifts and talents, and corporate together as a global dream. I think the best thing to do in Sheffield is to make as many friends and join as many activities as possible because these people and experiences might change your life at certain points beyond imagination. Work hard, play hard.

 "We pursue, we comply; we fail, we realize; we leap, we fall; we laugh, we cry; we share; we bury; we embrace, we apart. In the end, we live, and we die, quoted from my friend Michelle who studied at Sheffield as well. In Sheffield, I worked together with classmates cooking food and discussing projects together until late at night. I met new roommates and become friends once in a life time. I learned to prioritize the time between travelling and studying. The University is a palace full of treasure such as helpful alumni, kind teachers, day trips and gradually, I grew up.

Sheffield colours my life by teaching me how to fish. Should you have inquiries about budget, scholarship application, time/money management, language barriers, making friends, accommodation, travel, part-time jobs and so on, I have been through them and I am willing to be your friend to help with your worries.

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