On 21st and 22nd of August 2018, a delegation of ZSTU students visited the University of Mauritius as per the exchange program between the two universities. The delegation of 10 students, headed by Ms. Zhou Lili, Executive Official of Student Affairs, was warmly welcomed by the Pro.VC of Planning and Resources at the UoM, Associate Professor Mohammad Issack Santally, the two CI-UoM Directors, Associate Professor Naraindra Kistamah and Associate Professor Tan Xudong, and CI-UoM volunteer students.
During the two days’ visit, the delegation made tour visits of the UoM campus, workshops at the engineering building, labs, the National Museum, and the Sugar Museum. The amazing virtual reality lab aroused interest of the audience in this field. The two museums they visited help them know more about the history and development of Mauritius through its industry. In the end, the visitors were very thankful to the staff of UoM and the CI-UoM volunteer students for their warmth and hospitality.
The exchange program for the students of the two universities has been carried out for two consecutive years. The students of the two universities profit a lot from the program. With the support of the two universities and help of Confucius Institute at UoM, the program is designed to benefit more students of the two universities in the future.
On 19th of June 2018, a delegation of 20 CI students (comprising of staff and students of UoM), headed by Associate Professor Tan Xudong, Chinese Director of CI-UoM, flew to Hangzhou, China. The experience of the summer camp has left an indelible mark on all those who attended and CI-UoM have captured some of the lasting impressions of the visit.
(Translation) “With the help of the teacher, Miss Chen (Amity) of CI at UoM, my dream of learning Mandarin comes true. On this occasion, I would like to express my sincere thanks to the teachers and volunteers of ZSTU. They present to us, in different ways, the charm of Chinese language and culture, such as: Chinese songs, calligraphy, paper-cutting, and Taiji boxing. All these activities taught us a lot, culturally. In the end, we feel very grateful for the wonderful trip in China.”
Plate 1. Mili Chundunsing’s experience of her visit to China, captured in several photos. Mili with Chinese teacher, Amity, bottom right corner photo.
“The summer camp organized by CI-UoM-ZSTU is the best camp ever!!! I loved the hotel, public bicycles, local volunteers, the food and everything else. I explored the Chinese culture; clothing, opera, calligraphy, paper cutting and more. My dearest friendships were made there. The coolest thing is the singing classes and the Chinese songs sang in the bus.”
Plate 2. Shariad’s experiences of his visit to China, captured in several photos; Shariad, second from right, centre photo.
“The twelve-day summer camp in China was a fantastic and enriching time, and is a once in a lifetime opportunity not to be missed. This was my first visit to China and everything I experienced was beyond my expectations; the wide variety of delicious food, the well-balanced cultural programmes and tours; and the warm welcome and hospitality extended to us by the Zhejiang Sci-Tech University staff and students. Wow!”
Plate 3. Henri, first from right in second row, with other delegates of CI-UoM at ZSTU, Hangzhou, China
“These two weeks have been an enriching experience; making new friends in a new environment and with refreshing challenges. As a fresher to China, I have discovered, first hand, what China is about; something that is quite different from what we see or hear from other sources. On top of it all, Chinese hospitality has been beyond my expectation and I have experience no better, as of yet!”
Plate 4. Sanjana, front row centre, in the company of friends from CI-UoM and newly made friends from ZSTU
“The arrangements made by the staff of Zhejiang Sci-Tech University to host the CI-UoM students were outstanding. My heartfelt thanks and gratitude go to all the local volunteers for their valuable help and support throughout our stay and for sparing their time to accompany us during the various cultural trips. It was a great privilege for me to have been able to visit the beautiful city of Hangzhou and taste the local delicacies.”
Plate 5. Leena, first right, with friends from CI-UoM and a ZSTU volunteer at a market place near West Lake, Hangzhou.
“Things end but memories last forever.”
“CI-UoM Summer camp 2018 was genuinely beyond expectations. It was well packed with Mandarin classes, calligraphy, paper cutting and lovely visits to places such as Jinhua, West Lake, museums and shopping malls.
Thumbs up, ZSTU, for the hospitality and arrangements!”
Plate 6. A snapshot of Urvashi’s experience of CI-UoM Summer Camp in China, 2018.
“The CI-UoM Summer Camp 2018 was an extraordinary experience. It was led by Tan Lao Shi who was also our photographer for the numerous memorable moments! All the teachers we had during our calligraphy, paper cutting, singing, wu shu and mandarin classes were wonderful. We are very thankful to the staff and students of ZSTU for the excellent organization of the camp. The welcome and hospitality was beyond what we expected!”
Plate 7. Marie France, centre, expressing her affection for Chinese calligraphy.
“The well elaborated 10-day program incorporated Chinese classes, cultural exposures, site-visits and tours. It combined learning with pleasure. It is, above all, a valued and enriching human experience and I am overwhelmed by the richness and vibrancy of the Chinese culture. The summer camp has consolidated the bonding between students & staff of UoM and that of ZSTU. My warm gratitude and thanks to CI-UoM for giving me the opportunity to live this wonderful and unique life experience.”
Plate 8. Bruno, 11th from left, on a cultural visit with delegates from UoM and ZSTU.
“From experiencing life as regular ZSTU students attending classes and eating at canteens, to exploring China’s rich and diverse culture dressed up as Chinese opera characters, and touring Hefang Street, West Lake, Emperor Qin’s Palace Studio, Huayuan Village, the Silk Market, and other places, this summer camp has been an immersive and meaningful journey in the company of newfound Chinese friends.”
Plate 9. Ashna’s collection of photos depicting some of her newfound friends
“Ah China! My very first experience of summer camp was first class; whether it was the hotel, food, cultural tours or visits. The Chinese classes, lecturers, local volunteers and people were great. The most cherished and superstar moment was when we attended the opera and got the unexpected opportunity to try the make-up, dresses of bride and groom. We felt like superstars on the red carpet as our photos were being taken and the flashes went wild!!”
Plate 10. Inshirah, right, dressed up as a character in a Chinese opera and in the charming company of Chinese children at school’s canteen.
“I'm extremely grateful to CI-UoM for everything that the institute has offered to me. It's amazing how a language can change your life and bring more that you've ever wished for. It’s curiosity that has led me to this path but it’s also because of my yearning for new challenges. Thank you once again for the great life experience!”
Plate 11. Encapsulation of Shannon’s experience of the Summer Camp in China
“The CI-UoM Summer Camp was a dream-like adventure with unbelievable discoveries. Mesmerised by China’s hospitable people, best local volunteer-Lei (who is now a best friend), green tea varieties, historical sites; emperor’s palace and fans, swords and silk museums. Dressing up as the Monkey King was a marking experience and I finally learnt eating with chopsticks!”
Plate 12. Avinav’s recollection of the CI-UoM Summer Camp in China.
“The CI-UoM summer camp in China was wonderful. I really enjoyed the culture and site seeing, the delicious food, meeting and making new friends and learning mandarin language. I would recommend anyone to go to the summer camp if they have a chance or at least follow the courses provided by the Confucius Institute as this all together will be a very good experience. I would like to thank the Confucius Institute for this amazing opportunity!”
Plate 13. Nehela, third from left, making the ‘love you’ hand expression during a visit of Hangzhou.
Zhejiang Sci-Tech University invited six students of the University of Mauritius to attend a short term study from 15 December 2017 to 20 January 2018 in Fashion Design at the School of International Education, ZSTU. The six students were from the Department of Applied Sustainability and Enterprise Development (DASED). Five first year students of the BSc(Hons) Fashion Technology (Minor Entrepreneurship) programme of study and one second year student of the BSc(Hons) Design and Colour Applications for Industry programme of study attended the short courses.
There were several short courses on offer based on the level of study of the students and their field of interest. Among the various short courses on offer were: Introduction to Fashion Industry; Fashion Consumer Behavior; Draping for Fashion Design; Flat Pattern Design; and Designer Flats and Technical Sketching. The courses were dispensed by staff of ZSTU and FIT, Fashion Institute of Technology, New York and were free of charge for all the six UoM students.
The students were warmly welcome by the staff of ZSTU and FIT. They stayed in dormitories at ZSTU and were offered food subsidies during their stay. It took them a few days to get accustomed to life on campus, a new culture and language. And the integration was made easy thanks to the friendly staff and students of ZSTU. The students very much enjoyed the experience of studying at a foreign university and performed well in all the tasks and assignments given out to them. At the end of the respective courses, they were awarded a certificate for their proud achievements.
Besides the study, UoM students interacted with students from ZSTU on several occasions and visited a number of places in and around Hangzhou and could experience the rich heritage of Chinese culture and tradition.
Below are feedbacks from the students of the University of Mauritius after their short term study at Zhejiang Sci-Tech University, December 2017- January 2018.
Anshee Soobaroyen, First Year Student, BSc(Hons) Fashion Technology with Minor Entrepreneurship, University of Mauritius.
“My experience at ZSTU was an awesome one; we had a great moment together in Hangzhou not just in terms of academic knowledge acquired but also what we’ve been able to learn about Chinese culture and tradition. The Chinese food is delicious and with chop sticks, it becomes an even greater experience. We went on a cultural trip to 'Shanjing’ village where we learned how to make rice cakes; we stayed at the ‘Friendship’ building which is the dormitory of ZSTU and interacted with many international students with whom we were able to share our cultural experiences. This trip was a very useful one as I personally feel more confident and mature. I hope I get another chance to study at ZSTU and make happy memories of my stay there!”
Jahnavi Appadoo, First Year Student, BSc(Hons) Fashion Technology with Minor Entrepreneurship, University of Mauritius.
“This exchange program was a beautiful experience of a lifetime! It allowed me to discover, grow and finally be able to fly on my own and feel independent. At the beginning I was a little nervous but within a few days it felt like home. It was really easy to move around and it was not like how people would normally describe China. Everywhere was really neat and clean including the public transport. The people I met are generous and respectful. The land and cultures are rich and unique. This exchange program has allowed me to come back with an enlarged knowledge of both life and education. Despite the language barrier, I have a number of friends at ZSTU with whom I’m still in touch regularly. I would highly recommend this opportunity to anyone who is interested to be part of this program. Go for it without any hesitation!”
Julia Sookram, Second Year Student of Design and Colour Applications for Industry, University of Mauritius.
"The trip to China was just amazing! It’s an experience that helped me grow both academically and as a person. Things weren’t easy for me in the beginning because of the language barrier, and the lifestyle which are different from what we normally experience in Mauritius. But within a week or so, everything was perfectly well. This crash course allowed me to discover my abilities. I made new friends; Chinese and other foreigners, with whom I spent a lot of time doing some crazy stuffs. Chinese people are shy but they are really nice people and I miss China. I would like to go back any time soon. Hopefully there would be more opportunities like that, for me, if not, for other students to experience this.”
Neermala Baboolall, First Year Student, BSc(Hons) Fashion Technology with Minor Entrepreneurship, University of Mauritius.
“It was a big opportunity for me to get the chance to study at Zhejiang Sci-Tech University. Totally a great experience; as studying at ZSTU during the short term has increased my knowledge of the fashion world. The Professors at ZSTU and from FIT were very helpful and supportive. And special thanks to Miss Jane and Miss Norma who have taken great care of us during our stay. It was a comfortable stay with all facilities and amenities. During the cultural trip, I had learnt a lot about Chinese culture. Chinese food is very tasty. The people are kind and always ready to help.”
Khushdeep Tenghur, First Year Student, BSc(Hons) Fashion Technology with Minor Entrepreneurship, University of Mauritius.
“It was a transformative experience for me. This exchange program has allowed me to get a sense of the crowd, culture, and cuisine of China and what makes it one of the most exciting countries of the world. I must say that this program is quite supportive and puts emphasis on safety and knowledge as well. I am thankful that I got to be part of this program.”
Three staff of DASED attended an International Training Workshop on “Processing Technology and Innovation Design of Modern Silk Products”, 12th-26th Oct 2017. The Workshop was hosted and sponsored by the Ministry of Science and Technology, People’s Republic of China and the event was organized by ZSTU.
ZSTU has a remarkable history of silk education, research and development spanning over 120 years! The College of Materials and Textiles and the Silk Institute at ZSTU have grown into a prestigious educational location with distinctive characteristics, strength and international influence.
In Mauritius, most of the silk products are imported from Asian countries, in particular, China and India. They come in the form of silk yarns, fabrics and finished apparel goods. Some of the imported silk materials are for upholstery or home/domestic products such as covers for cushions and beds etc. There is no textile industry which is specifically geared towards the production of silk and silk fabrics in Mauritius. However, there is substantial activity around the use of silk yarns and silk fabrics for the production of high-end and value added silk products. Silk is a highly priced items for both apparel and home products such as dresses, scarves, ties, covers, bags and shoes.
There are a few designers who use quite substantial amount of silk fabric in their collection of silk scarves, ties, kaftans, dresses, shirts etc. For example, silk kaftans from the Mauritius Indian Ocean Collection of silk designer kaftans and silk mini dresses are made from delicate sheer silk fabrics decorated with clusters of golden grapes soft pink & gold beading and embroidery around the neckline and the body of the silk kaftans are hand painted and tie dyed to create various tropical effect for casual and other resort wear. There are also a number of shopping venues and malls which sell silk products, hand-painted locally at affordable prices.
This workshop on “Processing Technology and Innovation Design of Modern Silk Products” would allow resource persons attending the workshop to gain knowledge, know-how about silk, its processes and the different innovative products that may be derived from this high value natural fibre. There is a wide scope to expand the business of silk products notably in the sphere of lingerie, dresses, and suit. The experience gained from the workshop would benefit students well in that the acquired skills and techniques for the processing of silk materials would serve them for the development of value added and high-end products. The government has a number of schemes for students and entrepreneurs who could, through entrepreneurship, become drivers of the economy and provide an engine for growth and employment creation.
The participants attended lectures, seminars and talks given by experts in various areas of silk processing and innovative silk design at ZSTU. They also visited ZSTU silk museum, silk processing factories, Huzhou Silk Town and Museums, Hangzhou National Textile and Fashion Creative Design Experimental Park, and attended “Belt and Road Forum for International Silk” at Silk Expo, Hangzhou, Oct 2017 and a silk fashion show organised by Silk Expo. It was a very enriching experience for the participants.
A delegation of students from Zhejiang Sci-Tech University visited the campus of the University of Mauritius, 22nd-24th Aug 2017.
The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Jhurry, the Pro-Vice Chancellor of Academia, Professor Sobhee and representatives of Registrar’s Office met the students in the conference room. The VC gave a warm welcome speech and said that the students’ visit to UoM is the first exchange of students between the two universities. He hopes that the visit opens the door to further cooperation between the two universities. He wished the students from ZSTU an enjoyable stay in Mauritius.
The students were led by Miss Jin Xiannyu, Academic Staff at ZSTU, and were accompanied by ten students from UoM during their time at the University of Mauritius. The students of ZSTU experienced different aspects of life in Mauritius.
Trips to China Town, Chinese Middle School, National Museum of Aapravasi Ghat, Centre for Biomedical and Biomaterials Research, EON Reality Mauritius Ltd, and Sugar Museum were organized by CI-UoM. The students showed great interest in the local culture. What impressed them most was the inter-mix of different cultures in Mauritius. This is what Confucius Institute tries to advocate - harmonious society.
The Ambassador of the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China, His Excellency Mr Sun Gongyi, welcomed the students of the two universities. He advised that young students should do their best to promote the friendship between the two countries and be the ambassadors to disseminate friendship among people of the two countries.
Before the Chinese students left, students from the two universities exchanged gifts with each other as a token of their friendship. They hope that they can meet again next year, this time in China!