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Taylor D.

Alumnus, ISLP International Relations & Diplomacy 2013
Member, Golden Key International Honour Society
Political Science Major, University of Massachusetts Amherst 2014

"Stop considering it and make the decision to attend. I was initially unsure about whether or not to go, but I could not have made a better decision."

Q&A with Taylor

  • What was your most memorable moment at the program?

    The sightseeing, the lectures I learned so much from and the delegations I partook in were all incredibly memorable moments. But most memorable was the trip to the elementary school in the outer farmlands near Xi’an.

    It was incredible to hear these young children read along with us in English, a language that is not their primary one. They spoke so well. It was really awesome to see them open up to us as well. At first they were curious, but very timid and not too sure what to expect from us. After a while they really opened up and trusted us, to the point where the boys were running around and doing karate on Marc, Wells and me. It was one of the most fun moments of the trip for me.

  • Tell us about your experience.

    The program was one of the most memorable experiences of my life. I was able to experience a culture that was quite different from how I perceived it to be, based on my classroom education and how the media portrays China. The Chinese culture is incredible – from the language to the country’s proud traditions.

    The people I met broadened my mind, especially with regards to our global community. I not only learned from professors, professionals and students from China, but I learned a great deal from my peers. I was able to learn from people – who I now refer to as close friends – from every corner of the world.

    I learned about China’s society, government and international relations with the United States and the rest of the world. I was able to take part in the country’s traditions, including a great Peking duck dinner and meeting with Chinese professionals, professors, and students. We were able to attend lectures and delegate with Chinese Foreign Affairs members, as well as profound scholars like Zhang Zhexin, who referred to himself as “Tiger.”

    Finally, I was able to visit places that I will remember for the rest of my life. I was able to see one of the Nine Wonders of the World, the Great Wall of China. The higher you go and the farther you walk along the wall, the more breathtaking it gets. The Forbidden City was another place that is was not like any other attraction I have seen. You were able to appreciate the beauty of the architecture, as well as its history.

  • What would you tell a student who is considering attending the program in the future?

    Stop considering it and make the decision to attend. I was initially unsure about whether or not to go, but I could not have made a better decision.

    I was able to build friendships that will last a life-time, in just a week and a half. I learned from some of the most intelligent and insightful people in the world. I created an incredible professional network and I made memories that will last forever. It was the best decision I have made, not only for my career, but my life, and I would never want someone to miss out on doing the same.