Growing up in a traditional Chinese family, I read Western writings every day as an English major, but never really thought deeply about how language can shape political views and mold one’s identity. Having lived in the United States for many years, where I have studied and tutored other students in Chinese and English, I have gradually begun to form my own perspective on what it means to be a learner, an instructor and a researcher. I believe this new perspective is very valuable, in that it has enabled me to negotiate a reality beyond the one I knew in China, and to understand the importance of the learning, teaching and researching contexts.


Well, life could be more interesting and meaningful if we start to believe it is a “trying” process-- we all learn from what we do and we build up ourselves from what we choose. In 2009 I was a program editor with the Zhejiang TV International Channel in China, where I helped build economic and cultural ties between US, China and France. In the same year, I also worked as an intern at Zhejiang City Express, where I started to publish newsletters. In summer 2010, as a student teacher at the “Startalk” Chinese program and an ESL teaching assistant of DSP program at UMass Boston, I explored bringing art into language teaching.  


In 2012, I received my Masters’ degree in Applied Linguistics then started to work as an editor-in-chief for a Chinese language learning journal and as a program assistant in the Confucius Institute at UMass Boston, a nonprofit organization devoted to improving understandings between US and China.  The institute designed a Chinese speech contest for New England university students, offered a leadership training program for US-China university high-level administrators, and collaborated with the Chinese government to provide opportunities for American students to travel to China.


Because of my NGO work experience, I started to realize that education can change the life path of individuals and it is very important for people in developing and underdeveloped countries to have more equal opportunities. In those low income cities in the East of China, young people who qualified for higher education are forced to leave school and earn a living; in some underdeveloped areas, kids are still suffering from hunger, disease, and extremely limited education resources—being poor makes them even poorer. Thus, my current focus is on international development and south-south linkages. I want to explore issues like how to create a more equally distributed and open educational environment between East and West and how can development be sustainable in the South? These are major concerns I wish to study and learn how to address during the years of my doctoral studies at CIE.



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CIE Graduate