Visiting Chinese professors loving Grimsby's 'blue skies and thoughtful people'
TWO Chinese professors are enjoying the "blue skies and thoughtful people" of Grimsby.
Li Xiangwei and Xi Hong – known as Julie and Rose while in England – are professors at the Guangzhou University School of Journalism and Communication.
They are currently in Grimsby studying media culture, improving their English skills and observing the studies of their students on a 12-week media course at Grimsby Institute.
As well as the professional perks, they are also enjoying the small town of Grimsby – a far cry from the hustle and bustle of Guangzhou, China's third largest city.
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Julie said: "My favourite thing is the blue skies; it is so different to Guangzhou, which is very commercial, and the people are so thoughtful, kind and considerate."
Rose continued: "We are a long way from China but people have made us feel very welcome. Grimsby is like a home away from home."
The pair have plans to visit sites of interest all over the country in their studies of British media, including the BBC centres in London and Manchester.
They have already spent a day with the Grimsby Telegraph, shadowing one of the reporters. Their favourite place of all was Cambridge – the setting for Saying Goodbye To Cambridge Again by Xu Zhimo, one of China's most celebrated modern literary figures.
Rose said: "I remember learning the poem as a child, it was one of my favourites and I can still recite it from memory.
"I have imagined what Cambridge was like since reading the poem and it has always been my dream to go."
The pair are just one month into their 12-week trip and have not yet seen many of Lincolnshire's famous sites. However, they have tried some local cuisine, but an unlikely winner emerged as their favourite.
"Most of the food is quite sweet but we had fish and chips and it was very nice – but the fish was so big. My favourite food so far is the beef goulash we had in Hull," said Julie.
The pair are visiting along with their students taking part in the growing media course run by Grimsby Institute for international students.
Andrew McKinnon, director of international studies at the Institute, said: "Practical training with overseas partners is now becoming important for Chinese universities as their own delivery is highly classroom-based.
"Guangzhou are one of a dozen universities now collaborating with the Institute and its signature broadcast and media programmes."