Perceptions of Students from Southbound Countries

Read about the perception of students from soutbound countries to share the insight of studying in Taiwan.

Stephanie L. Sayson 石實恬/ Fu Jen Catholic University

Nationality : Philippines
Major : Biotechnology

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I am an international graduate student at Fu Jen Catholic University studying biotechnology.

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1. What made you decide to study in Taiwan?

I met my professor when he visited my university in Cebu, Philippines. We had a good rapport

discussing his research and my studies. He invited me to visit FJU and tour Taiwan. I visited

Taiwan for 2 weeks and found the research environment in FJCU is very engaging. The university is

inclusive and has a diverse student population (international and local) in various programs. I think

this is important to enrich my experience and learning.

Furthermore, Taipei is a pleasant place to stay. You can hike mountains, go to nature parks at the

same time, and be close to the sea all within couple hours driving from the city. Most importantly,

there are many opportunities for international student to study in Taiwan that I probably won’t be

able to easily access in my home country which eventually made me decide to pursue graduate

studies in Taiwan.

2.  Briefly tell us about the program you are studying. What subjects are you studying? What have you enjoyed the most in your studies?

I am studying under the Graduate Institute of Applied Science and Engineering in Fu Jen Catholic

University. Currently, I have immunology and seminar classes. I had classes on biomaterials and

advanced spectroscopy during previous semester. My program allows me to enroll in classes within

various subjects, such as Physics and Chemistry aside from my major which I think makes student

highly competent after graduation. Also, I can enroll classes in other universities in Taiwan that can

be highly specialized within my field. This goes to show that Taiwan has the capability and expertise

that students can learn from. Aside from my studies, what I enjoy most is interacting with Taiwanese

students. I am able to learn more from the country’s culture through them and vice versa. I find it

interesting that in my studies, even though there is a slight language barrier, we can communicate

our ideas easily and that our field has somewhat bridged that gap for both countries.

3. How is studying in Taiwan when compared to studying and being a student in your home country? (Teaching Quality、Environment、School Equipment、Laboratory or others)

In comparison, the teaching quality in Taiwan is at par with some of the best Western and European

universities. For example, FJCU has all the necessary facilities for conducting research in science and

engineering and most importantly, professors have a wide range of networks with other universities

within and outside of Taiwan. This was one of my major reason for studying in Taiwan aside from

having a conducive environment for learning in a culturally rich country. The Philippines is still at the

stage of catching up with the educational standard of the rest of countries in the Asia region.

Although we have produced plenty of excellent scientists in our country, with the

fast paced innovation in science and technology, I think Taiwan is at the top of the list, Philippines still

has a lot more to learn.

4.  What has been the most difficult part about applying to study in Taiwan? How did you overcome the difficulty?

Honestly, applying to study in Taiwan was not difficult at all. I was able to find all the necessary

information through the university website which was written in English. All the documents that I

needed to submit were through online. The instruction for application process are clear and concise.

The only difficulty I had was when I was getting my student VISA at the Taiwan embassy in my

country. The process was not so clear.

5.  What do you plan to do after you have finish your studies in Taiwan? Would you like to stay in Taiwan?  Why? 

I plan to stay in Taiwan for a few years after graduation. I want to have a working experience in the

country and afterward apply for a post-graduate position elsewhere. I believe that my studies in

Taiwan give me a competency to be able to work in US or even

Europe.

6.  How do you think studying in Taiwan can benefit you in your future career?

Studying biotechnology program in Taiwan gives me a competitive edge with other international

students abroad because the training that I get here is at par with universities abroad. The fact that I

am able to study in an environment that is culturally different and be able to successfully adapt gives

me the confidence to capably work in other countries and in various situations. Those reasons alone

increase my chances of having a good career in the future.

7.  What do you see as your key achievements when studying in Taiwan?

I would say my key achievements studying in Taiwan is that I am able to gain experience and

learning that I probably won’t get if I do my graduates studies in my home country. In the future,

when I start to establish my career in the Philippines or elsewhere, I can also share those learnings to

other people. Not only that, I also believe that as an international student, I am

enriching the community in Taiwan by interacting with local students. Especially, communicating in

English.

8. What advice do you have for other interested overseas students who want to come to Taiwan to study?

I would encourage interested overseas students to study in Taiwan. They will be able to learn the

country’s interesting culture, learn the beautiful, albeit complex, language, exotic food and well

preserved natural sceneries. It is as fulfilling and satisfying studying and living in Taiwan as any other

countries abroad.