11 Jan Staff English Class: First Semester
Staff English Class: First Semester
As we celebrate the completion of the first Semester of our Staff-English Class, I wanted to be sure to thank each of you for welcoming me into your culture, your community, and your classroom. A year ago, I was in the highlands of East Africa, teaching and living in an entirely different context, grateful for those experiences but equally thankful for the opportunities which a return to Asia has provided me, especially the time I have been able to work with you, the staff of Southern University of Science and Technology, practicing English in a constructive environment.
Your desire to discover, coupled with motivation for success is highlighted in the classroom, with each of you putting forth the effort needed to learn such a challenging subject. While there is rich history in Chinese, English is the language of this global world we live in, and it is my hope that through the lessons and discussions in our class, you are able to tint the lens through which you see into that vast beyond. Similarly, SUSTech’s path to be an international university is reflected in each of your own roles here, from the Library to Student Affairs, and from Secretaries to Lab Assistants. English stretches across each of the boundaries which separates your departments, but your participation in our class shows that you are not limited by language restrictions, instead, embracing the challenges and accepting the responsibilities.
A few months ago, at the beginning of our class, I suggested that language is only one part of culture, and that likewise, so too is music, clothing, beliefs, and food. Here then today, I am happy to have all the classes together to share some of the meals which gives credence to our past, unites us in the present, and promotes ideas about the future. It is my hope that this gathering acts as a strong ending for our first semester together, while at the same time representing a catalyst for continued growth next semester; learning together in an educational environment which fosters creative concepts about language and culture, and expands our worldview through cooperative ideas…