In 2010, as a second-year student at Arizona State University, I signed up for Chinese 101. At that point, I knew just three words in Chinese: ni hao (hello), xie xie (thank you), and bu yao (I don't want). That's it. Barely enough to ward off pesky postcard sellers in Beijing. Within a few years, however, I could read, write, listen, and speakfluent enough to live, travel, and even work in China.
How did I do it? Lots of time, lots of hard work, and lots of help from many teachers and Chinese friends.
My journey was one amazing experience after the othera series of study-abroad stepping stones. After just 9 months of study, I traveled to China for a summer at Sichuan University. A year later I went to Taipei, Taiwan to spend another summer entrenched with local culture. And just a one after that, I began a two-year stint in Nanjing, as a student and later as a working professional.
That Nanjing experience was especially dynamic. I worked as a reporter and writer for a Chinese language food magazine, focusing on international cuisine in China. I also hosted clean air workshops with a social enterprise, teaching Chinese people how to protect themselves from air pollution at low cost. At the same time, I did freelance work with the Jiangsu Broadcasting Company, hosting televised travel shows and galas and acting in commercials and a sitcom--all in Chinese. It was crazy and it was fun.
My fellow Chinese-learning classmates have gone on to do things even more amazing. They are managers at tech companies in Shanghai, translators in Taiwan, management consultants in Boston, financial analysts, academics, accountants, game designers, even aspiring international doctors and surgeons.
I hope you'll allow me to help you discover what you can do with Mandarin Chinese. As an adult learner of a second language, I know the challenges and pitfalls and how to overcome them. I know the resources, apps, and tools that will help you become an independent language learner. I don't claim to know it all (language learning is a lifetime pursuit) but I know enough to get you going. So let's go!
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Arizona State University - Bachelor in Arts, Chinese Studies
learning Chinese, watching Chinese tv shows, basketball, playing piano, marvel movies, computer programming, reading