William Neville-Towle joined our projects at Huaihua International English Training School and BE (Beijing) in the summer of 2017. Please read on to view his feedback:
Could you please tell us about some of your most enjoyable moments of the trip?
The most enjoyable moments of my trip fell into my larger sensation of amazement experiencing totally new cultures and being in a completely different environment. But beyond this general overall enjoyment, I’d have to say that I remember excursions to the Great Wall and the walled city of Pingyao with particular fondness. I would advise future Gotoco-ers to travel as much as possible whilst in China – done right it can be quite inexpensive!
Which were the highlights of the lessons, cultural excursions and outdoor activities?
I particularly enjoyed forming a relationship with my students over the course of my trip to China. By the end I was personally proud of their achievements in English and so encouraged by their continued progress.
How would you say the overall experience has benefited you?
My trip to China has made me more confident in my world outlook – most specifically as a traveller. Having been immediately apprehensive about placing myself in a country whose language I am unfamiliar with, and whose culture is largely alien from that of the UK, I am now comfortable finding myself in new environments and can’t wait to travel to and around China, East Asia, and indeed the larger world again.
What was the best thing about your experience in China?
The best thing about my trip to China would have to be the people I met. Both fellow gotoco-ers, Beijing expats and Chinese locals were so welcoming and happy to help in any way they could, and immediately made me feel at home.
Would you recommend participating to a friend and if so why?
I would certainly recommend Gotoco as a friend, not so much because of the scheme itself (although I certainly enjoyed it and value it greatly), but rather because of the possibilities Gotoco opens up. From this one experience I have caught the travelling bug, and with the TEFL qualification I have the opportunity to travel to remote parts of the world and (hopefully) do some good while I’m there.