Alumni Spotlight: Doreen Yi-Chen Chiang

Doreen was a 14 years old girl from Taiwan. She has been attended ORA summer camp in 2018. She was doing the introduction to medicine at Lady Margaret Hall. She can speak both Chinese and English and she was the student ambassador of the ORA summer camp.

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Why did you choose this program?

I chose to take the introduction to medicine course because I really wanted to experience the life of studying medicine in college. When I was browsing the summer school website, ORA's blogs and introduction video inspired me that I definitely want to attend ORA this year. ORA summer school have a lot of courses for you to choose, and the course looks really fun.

What did your program provider assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

ORA summer camp has provided coaches that transport you from the airport to the campus and campus back to the airport. During summer camp, you can borrow the laundry card from the office and bring your laundry to the washing machine. Also, ORA summer camp provided 3 meals every day; most of the time we eat at the dining hall, and sometimes we might grab our meals and eat it on the lawn.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

If you are still deciding whether sign up for ORA summer camp or not, I will say definitely sign up and go for it. You might not regret if you attend ORA summer camp, but you will regret if you didn't sign up now. The course in ORA summer camp is really fun and you can explore many things and get more experiences. Academies and afternoon activities were really fun and you can learn a lot of new knowledge that you cannot explore in your country or your school.

What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?

Every day you might have 2 periods of the academic classes. Between the classes, there will be a long break that students can grab some drinks and snacks, and you will have the chance to communicate with your friend that were taking different classes.

For the afternoon and evening, students can sign up for afternoon activities and evening activities, and at night we might have some free time that we can chat with our friends. For the weekend, Saturday we went to West Midland Safari Park, and Sunday we can hang out with friends in a group of three to go shopping at Oxford city.

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it? How did your views on the issue change?

ORA summer camp is the first time that I left home alone for 14 days. Before I attend, I was scared that I cannot make friend with other people, and I might feel homesick during the camp. However, people who attend ORA summer camp were super nice and all the students worked together as a family.

During ORA summer camp, you might have a lot of classes and activities that gave you a lot of experiences and you won't be homesick 'cause the course is so fun and makes you really enjoy in it. Even in the last day, you do not want to leave campus because the people are really kind and you made a lot of friends.

What English level do we need to have in order to be able to participate?

Personally, I think if you are not speaking English as your first language, but you study in the intentional school that speaks English really often, and you can have a well understanding of what the teacher is talking about, you might be able to understand the class materials in ORA summer camp. However, if you already score higher than 90 on TOEFL, then you might be ready for ORA summer camp.

For special knowledge for the course that you're taking, I think is better if you have studied it before for a year at school, so you might already have some understanding of that subject. And when you study more knowledge about that subject during the ORA summer camp, you will have a better understanding.