About China SST
Goshen College began to send students to China in 1980. The SST program was one of the first North American study abroad programs in post-revolutionary China. SST has always been based in Sichuan province and is currently located in the city of Nanchong at China West Normal University. Students will live with hosts on or near this university campus.
During the first six weeks the days will be divided into language and cultural study. Students will spend several hours each day studying Mandarin and listening to lectures about Chinese history and culture. Students may have an opportunity to visit historical and cultural sites, such as the beautiful area in western Sichuan where one of the largest statues of Buddha can be seen and beautiful Mount Emei will be explored.
Students will leave Nanchong for smaller towns in western Sichuan province to assist with English classes in middle and high schools. All Chinese children must learn English and many are eager to hear a native English speaker.
At the end of the service portion of SST the group will leave Sichuan and travel north to Beijing. Along the way they will stop in the city of Xian and visit the site of the ancient Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses. They will travel by train from Xian to Beijing where they will visit the Forbidden City, Tiananmen Square, Mao’s tomb and other important sites. They will also have the opportunity to explore a portion of the Great Wall shortly before their return to Goshen.
We arrived in Nanchong August 24 and spent a week unpacking, setting up our apartment, and doing a variety of things to get ready for SST – buying bus passes for the students, setting up a bank account, registering at the police station and meeting with key people who will help us with logistics this semester. Nanchong is a city of almost a million people, with another 6 million in the surrounding prefecture of rural areas and smaller towns.
Late on August 1 we touched down at the Chengdu airport after nearly 17 hours of flying, eager to prepare for another Goshen College Study-Service Term in China. Our arrival marked a return to China on several levels.
Our final day as a group in China was crisp and relatively clear. We headed out by bus to the Jinshanling section of the fabled Great Wall. …