Success in Any LanguageJan 15th, 2010 | By admin | Category: Highlights
BY ELISE MARIE KNABLE ’09
WESLEY COLLEGE has become a home to the thousands of students who have passed through its doors. Those who spend part of their life at the College experience a nurturing environment that provides both learning and growth. Some students come from further away than others, making the home away from home element even more important. Hui Zeng, a 20-yearold international student from Shanghai, China, has found that her Wesley home has far surpassed her expectations.
“I believe to be an international student is a challenge and also a wonderful experience. That’s why I came here,” Zeng explained. A former student at Yangtze University in Jingzhou-Hubie, China, Zeng studies English as her major and has a passion for American culture. “I think for a language learner, environment is very important,” she noted. Wesley provides the perfect environment for her needs as a student and visitor from across the world.
Zeng has found “the way of study” in America to differ greatly from China. “Here I feel like I can really learn something, not just fight for the final grade in the last one or two weeks,” she explained. At Wesley, she has found an atmosphere that engages students every day in and outside the classroom and promotes lifelong learning. Zeng has taken a variety of the classes offered, including Introduction to Business, Public Speaking, American Heroes, College Writing, Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) and College Choir, and she has enjoyed every single one of them. She shares a common sentiment with many other Wesley students who have attended over the years. “We have small classrooms and we can talk to professors like we talk to friends.” She likes the fact that she is not just a number in Wesley’s system, and found that her initial worries of coming to an American school subsided quickly once she arrived on campus.
Zeng believes the small college atmosphere has benefited her in more ways than one. “I feel that Wesley has taken good care of me,” she commented. She is very pleased with her apartment-style accommodations in Malmberg Hall. Zeng admits to “having a lot of fun” outside the classroom too. She has enjoyed trips to Philadelphia with Wesley’s International Student Association (ISA) and Washington D.C. with her history class.
Zeng came to Wesley “expecting to learn better English skills and know more about American culture.” But she will take away from her experience so much more than that, including an increased self-confidence and awareness of the world around her. During her one year stay at Wesley, she has already become much more independent. Zeng explained that in China, her dependence on family and friends was a large part of her life, and she worried about adapting to the American way of life as an international student here alone. “I think the most important thing of one’s life is to experience, and being an international student is just that. It is eye-opening. I learned how big the world is and how different life can be,” she commented. This has been the icing on the cake in her American college career.
When she returns to China, Zeng will not only have better English skills and understanding of American society, but also her own personal achievements that will enhance her future as a student and working professional. And that spells success in any language.