Nine FBISD students will travel to China for cultural exchange program

By Deborah Rowe
For The Star

NineFBISDNine Fort Bend ISD students will be traveling to China as part of a cultural exchange program known as the FBISD Global Iniative. Their educational adventure is January 2-17.

“The Fort Bend Global Initiative is a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization that was created in 2012 to enhance the quality of life in greater Fort Bend County by creating, fostering and promoting opportunities for international commerce, economic growth, educational exchange and cultural exchange,” said Lorelei Thorpe, Global Iniative coordinator.

Fort Bend County leaders including representatives from Lamar Consolidated School District, and the University of Houston at Sugar Land signed a memorandum of understanding with the Chancheng District Bureau of Education Foshan City of the People’s Republic of China. One of their main goals was to create an educational partnership. A sister school program was established between FBISD and Foshan #2 High School.

Thorpe said that they will spend a few days in Hong Kong and Beijing, but the majority of their time in China will be spent at Foshan No.2 High School in Foshan, China.

“They will eat their meals in the school canteen and attend classes. Special activities are also planned including field trips to local historic sites and the students will participate in special lessons on paper cutting, calligraphy, and dance.” Thorpe said. “They will eat, sleep and participate in all school activities on campus.”

This is in part to students from Foshan attending various schools in Fort Bend which was the first part of the Global Iniative and the cultural exchange program from Sept. 20 to Oct. 3.

Twenty students and 5 teachers made up the Chinese delegation from Foshan.

“The students were so enthusiastic and ready to learn and absorb everything around them,” Thorpe said.” They were divided between three campuses, but were brought together for several field trips to other FBISD high schools along with trips to NASA, and the Museum of Fine Arts.”

Thorpe said all the participants had a wonderful experience and everyone involved from host families, to students and teachers in the classes they attended were impacted by the visit.

“The relationships they built will continue to last far beyond the two weeks that we shared with them in Texas,” she said. “We are looking forward to Foshan soon.”

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