Scholarship recipients meet up before departing for Taiwan

PHOTO (L to R): Scholarship Program Coordinator Isabelle Chen, Lucas Kliphon of HES, Director Sophie Chou of the Education Division, Jonathan Wang of Taiwan Scholarship, and Consular Officer Marcy Yu pose for a photo in the lobby of TECO in Houston

Each year, the Education Division of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) in Houston organizes orientation for recipients of the Ministry of Education Taiwan Scholarship and Huayu Enrichment Scholarship (HES). The meeting provides the lucky students information on Taiwan, scholarship regulations, visa application requirements and gives recipients an opportunity to network with their future alumni.

The Education Division TECO in Houston provides services to eight U.S. states, including Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas. There are 20 recipients for both the Taiwan Scholarship and HES; however, only eight of the recipients live in Texas, and of that only three are located in Houston. Due to the geographical challenge, the dynamic of summer activities, and traveling plans for students, most recipients were unable to attend the event, held on June 21, 2018. Despite the challenges, two recipients, Lucas Kliphon with HES and Jonathan with the Taiwan Scholarship, managed to participate and found the experience extremely informative and fruitful.

Lucas and Jonathan have much in common. They are both recent college graduates of the class of 2018, alumni of the University of Texas at Austin, and have visited Taiwan before. However, they did not know each other until they met at orientation! When asked about their reasons for undertaking a long-term study in Taiwan, they responded almost in unison. There are so many countries in the world, but it is the place where they want to be. If possible, they would love to stay for work even after finishing their studies.

For recipients who were unable to attend the orientation in Houston, the necessary information was compiled in a download from the Education Division, TECO in Houston. Telephone and email are also open for consulting so as to accommodate other recipients.