Shim, Hunbo

Name: Hunbo Shim
Location of Study: Beijing, China
Program of Study: Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE)
Sponsors: Justin Liu

A brief personal bio:

Hello! My name is Hunbo Shim, and I am originally from California. I am currently a sophomore at the University of Notre Dame majoring in Information Technology Management and Chinese, and I hope to graduate with the International Business Certificate. In the summer of 2012, I will be studying at Beijing University, China, with the main goal of improving my proficiency in Chinese language. I do not have the Chinese background, so I have no idea what to expect over in Beijing; but I am extremely thrilled for a great opportunity!

Why this summer language abroad opportunity is important to me:

I am currently double majoring in IT management and Chinese Language with an interest in pursuing the International Business Certificate. After I graduate, I hope to work for a corporation that is highly involved with China. I would be responsible for facilitating the company’s interaction with China and filling the gap for the difference in language, culture, and ideas. If I were given the opportunity, I even plan on living in China for the first several years of my career to become more familiar with the culture and fluent in the language. Studying in Beijing this summer will greatly help me achieve this goal by, first, putting me in an intensive, fast-paced learning environment in which I will exponentially improve my language skills, and, second, by providing me an opportunity to get a first-hand experience of the culture. With these skills and experience earned, I feel that I will be far better prepared for my future career involving China. Also, after the summer study abroad, I will be able to take third year Chinese as a junior, which will put me on track for pursuing a major in Chinese. SLA grant enabled this great opportunity to come true, and I am truly grateful for a great experience I am about to have this summer.

What I hope to achieve as a result of this summer study abroad experience:

My main objective for this summer program is to master the second-year level of proficiency in reading, writing, and speaking Chinese, and get A’s on two classes I will be taking in Beijing. Specifically, I would like to be prepared for the third-year Chinese by 2012 Fall semester. Second, I hope to get the fullest cultural experience by actively engaging in the program’s cultural immersion activities such as Cultural Reimbursement Program and touring of famous attractions near Beijing. Third, by the end of the studying abroad this summer, I would like to get a confirmation from myself that the path I took in learning Chinese was a right decision and that I will continue. Lastly, I hope to make at least ten Chinese native friends of any age to be in contact with after I get back.

My specific learning goals for language and intercultural learning this summer:

1. At the end of the summer, I will be able to speak, read, and write at a level of proficiency equal to two semesters beyond my current Chinese coursework placement at the University of Notre Dame

2. At the end of the summer, I will be able to clearly explain the major differences between the American culture and Chinese culture to both Chinese and Americans.

3. At the end of the summer, I will be able to communicate with Chinese native speakers on cultural topics such as pros and cons of each culture.

My plan for maximizing my international language learning experience:

During my study abroad in Beijing, China, I will be given several different opportunities to immerse actively in the culture. For a week, the students will be touring the famous attractions near Beijing, and this great opportunity will not only help me understand the culture better but also gain some knowledge in Chinese history. Moreover, by traveling around in China, I will get the gist of Chinese mannerisms and learn general concepts and ideas about the Chinese lifestyle.
Also, CIEE, through their Cultural Reimbursement Program, allows students to be reimbursed for their participation in local activities such as tickets to Chinese movies, traditional music concerts, and historic places of interest. I will make sure to take advantage of this great program and try to maximize the effectiveness of my study in China. Attending such cultural activities will really help me better understand the local use of language, which in my opinion is also important to know besides the standardized use of Chinese.
Students are also invited to meet with locals and expatriates including journalists, diplomats, and business leaders. As a college student planning to work in China after the graduation, I could gain ideas and views on living and working in China as I share my plans and get advices from locals.
Through these several cultural immersion activities, I intend to take full advantage of my international language study.

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Reflection on my language learning and intercultural gains:


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How I plan to use my language and intercultural competences in the future: