Remarks at the Presentation Ceremony of 2018 Taiwan Scholarships Programme By Ambassador Calvin Ho.
It gives me great pleasure to be here with you at the presentation ceremony for the 2018 Taiwan Scholarships Programme.
I am pleased to announce that 20 Vincentians are awarded with Taiwan Scholarships offered by both the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of China (Taiwan) and Taiwan ICDF.
The number of the recipients is increased by 3 compared with last year.
On behalf of the government of the Republic of China (Taiwan), I would like to extend our warmest congratulations to each and every one of the recipient of the two scholarships.
Since the inception of the Taiwan Scholarships Programme in 2004 at the very initiative of Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves, over the past 13 years, 143 Vincentians have thus enrolled in degree programmes in Taiwan from these two scholarships, which has brought closer ties between the people of the two countries.
The reason for my country to launch such a programme for the youth of our diplomatic allies is that we believe that as a small island country without abundant natural resources like both Taiwan and St. Vincent and the Grenadines, nurturing young talents to be well-equipped with crucial skills and knowledge will benefit the development of the countries those students come from.
This year the disciplines the students are going to pursue range from computer science, international business, agriculture, international tourism and hospitality, and medicine, etc.
We are especially happy to know 12 of you will take the Mandarin Chinese programme for the first year.
I am sure that all kinds of relations and cooperation between our two countries will be further advanced with more Vincentians being able to speak Mandarin Chinese.
In the beginning, some of you may encounter a few difficulties in school affairs and lives in Taiwan, however, please remember that most of the Taiwanese are always glad to provide assistances.
I would also want to encourage you to make Taiwanese friends as many as possible, to travel in Taiwan as much as you can, and to share your cultures with Taiwan people as more as better. To serve as the cultural ambassadors for your country!
For those who are going to study in subjects related with medical science, I would strongly encourage you to observe the medical and public health systems of Taiwan, which gains high reputation in the international society.
As for those who are going to study in technology or engineering, I assure that Taiwan’s high-tech innovation education will make you become a technical expert in the future.
While enjoying your stay in Taiwan, do make sure that you study hard for your degree. It’s such a pity to know that some Vincentian students failed from their college programme in the past years.
Over the years, Vincentian students have maintained an excellent reputation on academic performances. I sincerely hope that all of you will make it through and get your degrees back.
Today, on this occasion, we’d also like to share another very exciting news with you. Ms. Marva Wendy Rodney has passed the selection process and accepted by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of China (Taiwan) to teach English in Taiwan for one year under the Foreign English Teacher Programme (FET). She will be the second Vincentian teacher teaching English in Taiwan. We welcome Ms. Rodney to join the family of FET.
Except for our MOFA and ICDF Scholarships, our government also provides Back to School Bursary program launched in 1998 to assist the financially dis-privileged students in this country with their education.
Last year my government has decided to double the funding from 100,000 USD to 200,000 USD for the first time, and I am here to announce that this year the amount of Back to School Bursary program will remain the same 200,000 USD.
In Taiwan, we always believe that education can help to change people’s lives.
That is the very reason our government has created or sponsored a wide range of programmes to assist the young talents- leaders of tomorrow. We do hope that all the recipients will make best use of the money and study hard.
Once again, congratulations to all the recipients of the year. Wish you all a very enjoyable and fruitful stay in Taiwan.