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Beyond Léman: Alumna Aleiyah Springer '16 Studies in Beijing

September 09, 2019

In addition to interning with us for five weeks in the Marketing and Communications Department, Aleiyah Springer '16 spent her summer studying abroad in Beijing, China. "A summer in Beijing was unlike anything I could have imagined. I met new people, experienced a new culture, and tasted authentic Chinese food. I really enjoyed living and traveling around Beijing. The city is so beautiful." Aleiyah spent nine weeks in Beijing studying Mandarin through CET Academic Programs. The program allowed her to be a student at Capital Normal University located in the Haidian district in Beijing. She had intensive Mandarin classes for four hours Monday through Thursday and a three-hour exam every Friday. "I have to admit that weeks leading up to my trip, I was extremely nervous. To spend two months in a place across the world can be nerve-racking and scary! But when I arrived in China, I realized that I needed to take advantage of my opportunity by living in the moment and taking the time to fully experience a culture so different from my own."

A rising senior at Haverford College, Aleiyah is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in East Asian Languages and Cultures with a minor in Mandarin. "When I went into college, I knew that I wanted to minor in Mandarin. I took Mandarin the entire time that I was at Léman and those classes sparked my interest in China and Asia in general. In the 11th and 12th grade at Léman, I took IB Ab Initio Mandarin which was so intense. The Mandarin that I learned at Léman helped me to succeed in college classes and even influenced how quickly I adapted to the intensity of my Mandarin classes in China. I hope to one day be fluent in Mandarin. My time in China has definitely helped me come one step closer to that goal." The future is bright for Aleiyah, who will graduate from Haverford in May 2020.  "I have a lot of options. I am in the process of applying to Master's programs and many of them are actually in Beijing and Shanghai. I loved studying abroad, it allows you to travel the world and experience new things. You don't get any of these experiences in the US." In addition, she is applying to fellowships and development programs at top-ranked companies.

Even though Aleiyah feels that graduating from college will be bittersweet, she says that she is ready for the new beginnings. "I am not exactly sure what I will be doing after I graduate, but I know that I will end up in the right place. I am excited to finish my last year at Haverford see what the future holds!"

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