Posted by: viaprograms | November 6, 2009

U.S. Ambassador to China Visits Guangzhou English Training Center for the Handicapped (GETCH)

Written by Joanna Wen, Grade ’08 student at GETCH

Mr. John Huntsman, the U.S. Ambassador to China, came to visit our school with Mr. Brian L. Gold Beck and other staff of the United States Consulate General in Guangzhou on October 26, 2009. The event also attracted a large number of media reporters.

Accompanied by his entourage, Mr. Huntsman arrived at 11:50 while some of us had already200911319635257 lined up outside waiting to welcome our very important guests. He was extremely easy-going to talk with and shook hands with nearly all of the students and staff as soon as arrived at GETCH. He then asked us our names and hobbies, smiling softly from time to time to answer the questions we raised, and encouraging us to study hard. Then our principal, Ms. Hu Miaoling, gave a speech to express her warm welcome for the arrival of Mr. Huntsman and other guests. Meanwhile, the ambassador also spoke very highly of GETCH, and donated lots of new books to our library.

The students led Mr. John Huntsman, Mr. Brian L. Gold Beck and other guests around our campus and introduced all of the facilities of our school, and also showed the guests our colorful campus life and the harmony surrounding our study and life. When visiting the table tennis room, Mr. Huntsman was very exited and eager to show his table tennis skills, so he played with Sophia, the grade ’08 student who showed him around our school.

After the inspection the ambassador gave a brief lecture in which he complimented our excellent oral English, especially Sophia’s. He expressed his heartfelt gratitude to her, saying she was an excellent guide.

Mr. Huntsman has excellent Chinese; his Mandarin is quite fluent. He used both English and Mandarin during the lecture, which won a lot of applause. His lecture was so humorous that all the audience was attracted in. He was even quite modest and made remarks about what he could learn from us, because he was not good at Chinese, especially the Cantonese, while we could speak English fluently.

Subsequently, the ambassador enjoyed the buffet lunch (provided by the U.S. Consulate General in Guangzhou) together with us on our campus, sharing this moment of warmth and harmony. Then at 13:30 he departed. Though only a short span of one and a half hours, we still deeply felt his feelings of support and care for GETCH. It is because of this love and help of the enthusiastic people at home and abroad that GETCH can move towards a glorious tomorrow step by step!

VIA has been sending volunteers to GETCH since 2000. To learn more about this school and VIA’s involvement, please visit the China long term post page of the VIA website or the website of GETCH.

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