Print Edition: June 18, 2014
As a future exchange student, I was completely thrilled to hear of the UFV’s partnership with the Beijing Concord College of Sino-Canada (BCCSC). UFV will be expanding its global partnership with China by accepting up to 30 Chinese exchange students every year to take part in its aviation program, which is unique to UFV. Unlike most aviation programs, this program will combine aviation with business. It not only prepares students to be pilots, but also enables them to work in management. Come September, UFV and BCCSC will start coordinating to make this happen.
This will be a great opportunity for BCCSC students, as well as for students of UFV. The world around us is becoming more globally engaged and the opportunity to study abroad is a great way for students to adapt to these changes. While Abbotsford and the Fraser Valley are very diverse, it can be easy for people to become uninvolved in the multiculturalism around them. North Americans are so caught up in our daily routine, and this lifestyle is no different for students. The chance to immerse oneself in a foreign culture, especially while studying, is the perfect way to achieve a well-rounded education. What better way to learn about the world around us than to actually study in the world around us?
I understand this is not possible for every student. Not only can studying abroad be extremely expensive, but it also requires moving to a foreign country and leaving behind friends, family, jobs, and much more. This is not a commitment every student can make. Though many students are not able to study abroad, this doesn’t mean they can’t experience foreign cultures in their education. UFV may send out large numbers of exchange students every year, but students come here to study as well, and this partnership will increase those numbers. There are many opportunities for students to volunteer with UFV’s study abroad program and become more familiar with the different cultures at UFV.
I see travelling and experiencing various cultures as a very important aspect of life, and I can honestly say I am proud to attend a university that does its part in becoming globally involved. My education is of great importance to me, and I feel the best education anyone can receive is one full of diversity and multiculturalism.
I am always looking to expand my view of the world around me and what it has to offer, and I know there are other students who feel the same way. The partnership between UFV and BCCSC will only lead to strong connections between Canada and China, the universities, and most importantly, the students. While the students of BCCSC may only be coming to study aviation and business, they will bring with them their culture and that will have a beneficial effect on us. We are extremely privileged to be able to accept these students into our university and offer them the international experience they deserve.