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李安康先生
國際事務處總監

   
Peter Li was born and raised in Hong Kong. He spent 32 years in the United States before returning to Hong Kong and has been serving as the Director of the International Office at HKBU since September 2006. He began his work in international education in 1983 and worked at two major publicly funded institutions in the US. Before his return to Hong Kong, he was the Associate Dean of International Students and Scholars at West Virginia University in Morgantown, West Virginia.


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My Lifestyle
2009-06-17 22:37:49.0 網誌分類: 生活分享
 

One of the many things that I can share at work with my students is my personal experiences of studying abroad. Many years ago, when I first applied and was accepted into a college in the United States, I must admit that I had somewhat of a mixed feeling. On the one hand, I was excited about the opportunity that I was given to learn new things and experience a new culture. On the other hand, I was also very scared; for it was my very first time leaving home and traveling abroad. I also chose a small liberal arts college called Berea College in central Kentucky. The little town of Berea only had 7,000 people at the time as compared with a population of about 4 million in Hong Kong then. After some serious thoughts, I finally decided to give it a try.

To be quite honest, it was hard to get used to the setting and lifestyle there when I first arrived there. The boring countryside setting, the birds’ noisy chirps made in the wees hour of the morning, the lack of public transportation, the unfamiliar southern drawl and the weird food I was served made the place less than desirable. However, bit by bit, little by little, I was able to make many friends in this small college town setting and people there were quite friendly and were deeply interested in learning more about me as a person. I also interacted well with the teaching staff there and I was invited to many of the professors’ home for occasional dinners. I joined the host family program for the whole four years while I was there and for a couple of those years, I stayed with my “families” for Christmas breaks and was actively involved in their holiday celebration activities. Of course, I sang for the Chapel Choir and had lots of fun touring with the group to all corners of the eastern part of the United States during Easter and semester breaks. As times went, all these things that used to bug me so much such as the boring setting, the southern drawl and the weird food, subsided. By the time I was ready to graduate, I really hated to leave the place where I “grew” and learned so much.

I would not trade my undergraduate experience at Berea for anything! I was able to overcome my fear at one point in time to be willing to keep an open mind and try new things. My undergraduate experiences have turned a new chapter in my life. I hope all our youngsters will grab the opportunities that may come along the way to enrich their life experiences.


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