"Having been selected to represent the School of Law at the University of Limerick on the Summer Immersion Programme in Sichuan University, Chengdu, China (SCU), I was unsure of what to expect. Upon arrival, I was surprised to see all the colourful lights surrounding each building of the city – it was alive and bustling, and full of cultural diversity that we would get to experience over our two week stay.
Our main purpose in SCU was to learn. Not just through classes, but through many different cultural activities which demonstrated the deep values and beliefs held by those in China and how these influenced their culture and way of life; it was eye-opening.
Our lectures consisted of many comparisons – between the law, the culture, and the people of various jurisdictions around the world. Within these classes, we were often asked for our insights or input into the various lessons, comparing our thoughts with those of our fellow Chinese classmates. Our interaction with the participants of the SIP involved meeting students from SCU, but also students from Belgium (KUL), Singapore (NUS), and America (MIT). We made presentations on Ireland and the University of Limerick in the ‘Sharing sessions’ held with all international students and participated in the Big Bang Theory Science Competition and debates.
We also had the opportunity to visit Mount Qingcheng, the local Panda Breeding Research Base, the traditional Chinese Jingli street, the Jinsha Museum, and the Leshan Giant Buddha – these visits were personal highlights of my visit. We also had the opportunity to try traditional Chinese teas and local delicacies during our stay.
Our participation on the SIP allowed us to experience and learn about the many positive aspects of China. The trip was a life enhancing experience that will hopefully help my interaction with various cultures throughout my future career. I look forward to returning to China in the future.’