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WSC Adventure in China

Thursday, March 31st, 2011
Posted by Roxane Molinari

WILLISTON, N.D. -Students and instructors from Williston State College recently traveled to Beijing, Shanghai, and Hong Kong. The participants went to learn about the culture and businesses in China.
Participants left on March 7 from Fargo and traveled to Beijing. For most students, it was their first time out of the country.
On the first full day the group visited Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, and the Summer Palace. They could not go onto Tiananmen Square because the National Congress was meeting. They visited the Forbidden City where they learned about some of the emperors and the different buildings. The group also learned a lot about Chinese superstitions. Taryn Sveet, WSC Adjunct Instructor, said she loved learning about the history at the Forbidden City.
During many of our tours, students were asked to take pictures with locals. Vinny Wagner, a WSC student was given someone's baby to hold while the mother took a picture of him and her baby.
The group climbed the Great Wall. The portion that they climbed was built during the Ming Dynasty. When the group returned to Beijing they were also able to walk through the 2008 Olympic park area, enjoy a traditional Peking Duck dinner, and some of the participants went to the Peking Opera.
The group went on a Hutong Tour to see where people lived. Hutongs are being torn down now to build condominiums. The group then went to the Yanjing Beer Plant and learned about their business practices. The group visited one of the three Walmarts in Beijing. Walmart in China is very different from Walmart in the US.
The next stop was Shanghai. The group went to an authentic restaurant on Nanjing Road where the workers did not speak English. DJ Weismann, a WSC student, said, "My favorite part about China was the food." Kassie Anderson, WSC student, said she misses the food in China. After the meal on Nanjing road, they visited the 100th floor of the Shanghai World Financial Tower.
On the second day in Shanghai the group visited the Jade Buddha Temple where the group learned about the Buddhist religion. Shanghai is on Silk Road, so the group visited the Silk Factory. The group also went to the Yu Garden, a famous garden in Shanghai. That evening the group went on a river cruise to see old Shanghai and new Shanghai at night.
On the next day the group visited Shanghai Lixin University of Commerce. The students were able to get to know Chinese students and compare their colleges. The group then went to Maple Auto, which bought Volvo last year. That evening the group watched an acrobat show.
On the next day the group traveled to Hong Kong. That evening the group went to a light show in Hong Kong.
The next day they toured the city of Hong Kong where the group learned about cemeteries, horse racing, the economy, and the main differences between mainland China and Hong Kong. The group went to Victoria's Peak and was able to see the entire island of Hong Kong. The group then visited the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
Some of the group then went to the giant Buddha on Lantau Island on the last full day in Hong Kong.
Barb Tininenko, a community participant, said, "I thought it was a very well planned, informative, and enjoyable trip with many adventures."
"I think the students really enjoyed learning about another culture by being immersed in it. I hope the college considers doing another excursion like this in the future" said Kim Weismann, Instructor of Communication at WSC.
Walmart, Gate City Bank, and Dickinson Ready Mix helped fund the students' travel visas. The students are visiting Williston High School and Dickinson High School classrooms to share their experiences and what they learned. There will be a free community forum on April 26 at 7:00 pm in the Teton Grill at Williston State College. Refreshments and snacks will be served.