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Chinese Culture Course Program and Franca´s feedback

To enhance the understanding of traditional Chinese culture among teachers and students in Finland, Shenzhen Polytechnic provided a series of short courses for teachers and students from the Finnish Universities of Applied Sciences China-network to learn the Chinese language and culture from 31.10.2022-12.12.2022.

There are 10 classes on 5 topics in total. Each topic delivered in two 45-minute classes. Online teaching was adopted to create a different cultural experience on the "cloud". The rich content of these courses consists of Chinese language, China´s 40 Years of Economic Development, Exploration of the Chinese History and Culture, The Kingdom of Chinese Characters, The Art of Paper Cutting, Chinese Festivals. While highlighting Chinese traditions and culture, will help students to broaden their horizons and experience Chinese traditional folk customs and culture in depth.

After the Chinese Culture Course Program, China-Network interviewed Franca Santiá from LAB UAS to have her feedback on the course program.

Franca is an Argentine from Buenos Aires, Argentina. She used to be a lawyer in Argentina, then she got a degree in Tourism and when she was a lecturer at the University (teaching law and tourism), she discovered Finland in a work trip. After that, she decided to do her master degree in International Relations in Tallinn, Estonia, where she met her Finnish husband. Nowadays she lives in Imatra - northeast of Finland - working in LAB UAS as a Tourism and Business lecturer. She is also a tutor teacher to foreign students who come to study in Lappeenranta. Here is the interview with Franca Santiá, she told China-Network about her personal experience with the Chinese Culture Course Program.

- Why did you choose this course?

I received an e-mail from my boss about this course. I'm always interested in learning new things and I think Chinese civilization is fascinating and interesting. I am interested in Chinese culture, and history. I would like to know also how the Chinese economy can develop at such a fast speed. I come from South America, and I have always been curious about how Asia culture is. That´s why I wanted to participate in this course.

- Did the course give you a more clear picture of China and Chinese Culture?

Yes. Now I know the basic structure of Chinese characters, how to say some simple words, the main festivals in China and have a general idea of why and how the economy grows so fast in China. I also know where to find information about China through this course.

- How did you feel about the Chinese Culture Course?

I really do like the whole Chinese Culture Course Program and I would like to learn more. It just feels that 45 minutes per class is never enough.

- What did you like the most and least about this course?

Chinese history is the part that I like the most, it´s so interesting to find out why Chinese people behave in a certain way nowadays throughout history. How important tradition is in China. There is nothing I didn´t like about the course, only would´ve hoped there would be more Chinese language teaching.

- What other topics do you want to add to the course?

I would like to know more about the economy. We can combine the lecture with some activities, for example, workshop. More engagement, some comparison between Chinese and Western society would be interesting, maybe some more materials and more time to reflect during the class.

- What made you stick to the end?

I attended all the lessons and it was so easy to do because I am so interested in it. I am doing it because I want to learn it. I had so much fun during the lecture with lecturers, for instance, prof. Jack. He was so nice, he always tried to get students involved during the lecture.

- If you could change one specific thing of the Chinese Culture Course Program, what would that be?

I wouldn´t have changed anything, but there is this one specific thing that is so fascinating to me - “Ying Yang”. I really like this Chinese philosophical concept to find inner balance and harmonize and respect nature.

- What was the most useful thing that you have learned?

To know what China is now and how it ends up here. Important to understand the Chinese market and culture. Creativity, positivity and cooperation are essential elements in business for the Chinese. In the end, Chinese people are not that different from Westerners, we are all the same kind.

- How did the course fit into your weekly schedule?

Monday afternoon fits my work schedule well. I have free time on Monday afternoon. That´s why I was lucky enough to participate in all the lessons.

- What will you tell others about this course? To whom would you recommend this course?

To everyone, it is a well-done course with very interesting topics.

- Something we can improve in the future regarding the Chinese Culture Course Program?

Maybe a little longer time, 45 min is not enough. Add interaction as well. I would like to know also the topic regarding Chinese education.

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