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  • Alumni of the University of Essex matchfunded £500


A project by: Liam Whittaker


WE RAISED £1,250

from 2 donors

This project received donations on Tue 25 Jul 2017
One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way.

The project:

I am currently raising funds to cover the expenses for my once in a lifetime experience at a summer school in Hangzou, China. I will be studying at Zhejiang University for three weeks, a UK Government programme. I will be learning Mandarin as a foreign language & Chinese culture. The total cost for my trip is £1350 and a full breakdown of the costs is shown below. This will be an incredible opportunity for me to gain first-hand experience in a field I hope to be a part of following my time at the University of Essex. I hope to use the opportunity to network with professionals, improve my current second language speaking abilities and to use the newly gained knowledge to aid my university studies.

Who am i?

My name is Liam. I was born and raised in Essex, England. I am a final year student studying Sports Science and Spanish language. After graduating this summer, I plan to return to Essex University doing a masters degree in Teaching English as  Foreign Language. I am a driven and hardworking student, with the passion for travelling and a love for worldwide cultures. I am optimistic by nature and truly believe that one person has the ability to change the world around them.

my story

    I have chosen to take part in this summer school as it will provide me with the opportunity to travel, learn and plan for my future career path. I believe this experience will help me grow as person, as it will allow me to be independent, and to adapt to cultures that are different from what I'm used to.

    "So why do you want to learn Mandarin?" Simple, I want to produce a positive change for those in need.This want was triggered following my volunteer work in Thailand, teaching English to children. I learned so much about the things that are currently being done to help less fortunate people. But there is still so much more that can be done. Consequently, here I am asking you to help me, in order to help other people. I won't be volunteering to teach English , but I will be working towards this goal, there are 5 Mandarin speaking countries in the world, all with huge populations, so by learning Mandarin as a foreign language, I will greatly enhance my skills to help others by teaching English as a foreign language.

    Zhejiang University

      I will be studying at Zhejiang University, founded in 1897, it is one of China's oldest, most selective and most prestigious institutions of higher education, with one of China's largest academic libraries. The University has great vision, values, principles and purpose. Using educational experiences to shape individuals into agents of change willing to work for the benefit of all - individuals who take responsibility for their own lives and are aware that their actions can transform others - capable, talented, upright, committed, involved visionaries with a global perspective and entrepreneurial spirit, not only at the university, but in all spheres of their lives. Their students education is a vital component of their ability to excel. Encouraging students to transform their, economic, political, environmental, and social realities on a social, professional and personal level. The University Motto encourages all students to follow the spirit of 'pursuing the truth, being rigorous and earnest, exerting oneself for never-ending progress, and pioneering new trials'. In short, the motto is 'seeking truth and pursuing innovation'.

      For more information about the University, check out their website here- http://www.zju.edu.cn/english/


      I would like you to support my summer school as it will be a massive stepping stone in bettering my future academically, and in a career sense. By learning Mandarin within such a prestige University, I hope to use the skills and experience I gain to aid my goal of working within teaching English as a foreign language. Whilst this organisation will help me, it will also provide me with the expertise to help a greater number of people in the future, in many countries of the world, large numbers of children start school, only to find their teachers are speaking to them in language they don't understand. My ultimate goal is to work with the likes of UNICEF and Save the Children and to help disadvantaged children all over the world to acquire the bare necessities that we, living in a developed country, all have. I believe that this experience will help me to achieve this goal as it will make me more employable and will improve my transferable skills. It will prove that I have high levels of adaptivity, following successfully studying in a foreign country and that I am able to build connections across borders in my field of work.


    The total cost of the summer school is £1350 (this includes return flights, visa, health insurance, cultural visits, local transportation and meals).

    • If the minimum fundraising target of £1,050 is raised, all the money will go to the costs of attending the summer school: flights, visa & health insurance.
    • If the maximum fundraising target of £1,350 is raised, then the money will pay for food for the three weeks, cultural visits with the University and local transportation.


In order to show gratitude for your donations, I will give rewards as a token of my thanks.

These rewards will include: souvenirs from Hangzou, exclusive photos and for larger donors you will be graced with a Skype call from me filled with exciting updates of my month and a virtual view of Hangzou.


I will provide regular updates during my experience, to see how I am doing check out:

Instagram - @liamrw13

Twitter - @Whitts13

Email - lrwhita@essex.ac.uk - give me and email & I will send you daily updates in a blog format :)


  • I would be extremely grateful if you could give, any amount no matter how big or small - a little can go a long way.
  • Please also share my project with as many people as you can, you never know who may be inspired to give.

感谢您的帮助。跟随我的旅程,我希望我能够告诉你所有关于我在蒙特雷的时间。 Gǎnxiè nín de bāngzhù. Gēnsuí wǒ de lǚchéng, wǒ xīwàng wǒ nénggòu gàosù nǐ suǒyǒu guānyú wǒ zài méngtè léi de shíjiān . Thank you for your help. Follow me on my journey and I hope that I will be able to tell you all about my time in Monterrey.