I am taking you all on a tour of my school. This is where I spend most of my time at. :)
Ming Chuan University (MCU) is located in the north of Taiwan. The main campus is in Guishan(龜山), Taoyuan County(桃園縣); there are three other campuses, two in Taipei(台北) and one in Kinmen(金門). MCU strives its best to reach out its hand toward the world outside of Taiwan. It establishes an international community per se on campuses by recruiting students from all over the world. Now, there are more than 300 foreign students from 61 countries worldwide.
Being a Taiwanese student in MCU, I'm thus given a better opportunity to be exposed to different people and cultures and more importantly, to cultivate a broader outlook upon the world. When I first came to Ming Chuan, I used to(I still do) bring a global map with me, every chance I get to meet a new friend from a foreign country I do not know of, I would map out and have him/ her to point out where exactly the country s/he comes from is. Furthermore, we would get into a talk about culture if time allows. It's been an eye-opening experience for me!
However, having spent a year in MCU, something that I have observed seems to explain why Taiwan seems still miles away from the world and is left in its own solitude. Taiwanese people are less enthusiastic about learning a culture that differs from our own. Being surrounded by miscellanea, most Taiwanese people only get around with people of the identical culture with themselves: Taiwanese. Foreigners in Taiwan have managed to create a community of their own by bringing together people from anywhere else besides Taiwan: a dude from Swaziland is a good friend of a Nicaraguan; an Indonesian girl is dating a South African guy; a mister from Sao Tome socializes with a Korean. Some Taiwanese do welcome a foreign culture with his/ her open arms but the culture does not have to be exotic; we are more interested in rubbing our shoulders with people from the countries that are known by us: United States, Canada or United Kingdom. Somehow, it simply draws ourselves closer to ignorance when we selectively socialize with people of certain categories.
Foreign visitors who come to Taiwan have learned a great deal about Taiwan from their experiences, yet we only seem to brush past them as we could care less about how much information we have received from those passengers about the outside world. I didn’t believe this but it’s coming to me that we have built a closed culture and we seem to live in this box quite comfortably. Although the diversity is melting in a gigantic pot, we still tend to differentiate ourselves from others: Us and Them.