[加拿大] Degan Jeffery 士炎
MS (2019), Department of Business Administration, ECNU.
BD (2015), School of International Chinese Studies, ECNU.
Currently, he is a part owner of a learning center for language, calligraphy, LEGO, amongst other subjects. Also is correlation with kindergartens around Shanghai. (2019)
Basking in the Great Love of ECNU
Between Chinese language courses, a bachelor's degree and a master's degree, I have been at ECNU for over ten years of my life. The University has opened up many doors for me and given me opportunities to gain knowledge and experiences in many different fields. The University provides bi-annual trips around China. You get to travel for a few days with other schoolmates. By doing this, I made life-long friends that I keep in contact with to this day.
When I started a bachelor's degree in business Chinese, I moved to the dorms, which was a fantastic experience. A group of around 20 of us just started out hanging in the main lobby and just chatting with one another at random times or all at once. We even began starting our own kind of clubs. We would have a movie night and set up a projector, and watch movies from different countries. We would have pot luck dinners (bring a dish from your own country and share). We started language class where we would all just meet up in the lobby, learn different languages, and get to know each other's cultures. This got me involved with the International Student Union and started up 3 clubs with my close friend Youssef. We ended up starting a Chinese-English Corner for all to join, a Multi-Language Club that is still going on after 8 years (I think, not to sure what year we started it), and a Dance Club.
I was really involved with the school and volunteered much of my time. Whether it was picking up new students at the airport, taking new students to apply for their student visa, helping out showing people around the city and teaching tips and tricks. Being involved with the multi-cultural festivals, on the Dragon Boat team for 7 years, volunteering to help children with special needs, and even volunteering with other ECNU students to Yunnan to help kids and help them build a new library. Amongst the things I have stated, there are many more things that ECNU has given me the opportunity to have been involved with and has in one way or another improved myself and has given me new sets of skills that I use throughout my everyday life.
While studying at ECNU, teachers, classmates and even school mates have always been great to be around and generally more than willing to help out and explain things you may have troubles with. I am so grateful for their kindness and support whilst studying. It made the studying experience less stressful and definitely more enjoyable!
After my studies, I was able to do an internship at a Canadian company in Shanghai to then be approach by one of the bosses to go with him to start up an education center. I was able to introduce him to two other people and now the four of us are running a business that even through many difficulties and challenges, we are still surviving and doing well. One step backwards, then three steps forwards. It has been a rush and an adventure. I love it and look forward to what the future has to offer!
I have always tried to help and felt that the phrase “爱在华师大” has a lot of meaning. Not only are you able to feel love and care from teachers and schoolmates. But you may even be as lucky as I was to have run into the love of my life. There are many things to gain at ECNU; you just need to try new things out and be involved!