The Chinese Embassy in Britain held a reception Monday evening for representatives of over 100 young Britons who are ready to work in China as English language teaching assistants this year.
Selected and supported by the British Council, these young English native speakers will be allocated to 41 schools and universities across China for the 2017/18 academic year. They are going to take a two-week summer training camp in Beijing, which has been designed to get them fully prepared for the one-year job.
Hannah Qurashi, the project coordinator from British Council, told Xinhua they had received more than 400 applications for the job this year and chose eligible ones through tests and interviews. Although Chinese language skills are not a must for applicants, some of them have learned out of personal interest and do speak Chinese quite well.
Besides experience of working in China's education sections, the teaching assistants are also encouraged to explore and make friends in China.
Edward Vanes, who is giving up his job in Britain to participate in the project, said he went to China twice and is excited for the opportunity to further his cultural understanding of China.
Wang Yongli, Minister Counselor (Educational) at the Chinese Embassy, told the assistants: "I hope you all take time to understand China and value your work in China," hoping the annual project would continue to generate more British-Chinese cultural exchanges and friendship between young generations.
The English Language Assistants program, launched by the British Council, has attracted thousands of British university graduates to teach English abroad. Many assistants on returning home said the experience changed their lives forever.