Welsh Education Minister reviews HE

The Welsh Education Minister Huw Lewis has unveiled details for funding for Higher Education across the country. His speech focussed on three key themes – including fair sustainable funding for Wales.

For the ministers speech and interview, click here.

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Welsh university students pay around three and a half thousand pounds for their tuition fees – with the Welsh government paying the rest through a grant. The students get the money wherever they study. The Welsh Conservatives say that policy is unaffordable. So it’s not surprising that sustainable funding was one of Mr Lewis’ key themes. And he says HE funding in Wales is going up.

Mr Lewis said his other key themes were equality and equity and jobs and growth. He said universities should play a bigger role in society. And he talked about a recent trip to China and what his impressions were of that country’s recent growth…

In the audience for the Ministers speech was Dr Lynn Williams – an executive of scholarship and research society in Wales.

According to the Minister, there will be a national debate about his review of funding for Higher Education in Wales – with everyone welcome to express their opinions.

 

This is literally the most time consuming news I have ever made. On Monday night right after the conference, I wrote the first version of this piece. Later on Wednesday I showed that to James, he told me some broad information of Monday review which made me realized whenever I wrote news, I shall always link the background with current event. Apparently, that’s review is not just a simple speech. The minister Huw Lewis is in a big trouble right now, because current HE funding policy in Wales costs the government a lot money, and the expenditure is still increasing. That’s why Welsh Conservatives think it is unfavorable. That’s why in the review, Mr Lewis claims that the current policy is ”sustainable”. For more information, click the links below!

I personally think this is a very interesting topic. You can see England, Welsh they are all in UK while as relatively independent nations their own education policies are so different.

Golden fish

Sometime you could be overwhelmed by the world around you so that you forgot the initial reason why you are doing these things.

This is something I picked up from a church. Golden fish sees quite clear of what happens in the tank but gets rather blur view of everything outside the tank. Sometime, we are exactly like these fish because we only see what happens around us. However, there are more things outside the tank. That’s why we say, sometime, you need to think outside the box.

It is hard to keep a clear mind all the time, but it is important to keep awake once a while.

 

Let Me Tell You Some Halloween Stories

I am a Chinese, so honestly I have never celebrated Halloween in my entire life. So when people around me started to talk about what costumes they planed to wear, I panicked. What it Halloween? 

According to my limited knowledge, Halloween is when children knock their neighbors door and say treat or trick while grown-ups wear either funny, sexy or ridiculous dresses. But after these days’ experience, my impression on Halloween somehow changed.

First of all, UK Halloween and US Halloween are two different stories. One of my Germany friend invited me to a farm for pumpkin carving and cornfield maze. For some reason, I mentioned this to one of my lecture James and he was the very first one tell me British Halloween is pretty much Americanized. Having that in mind, I went to the farm for evidence. Dylan who studying drama in local college volunteered on the farm, he told me a suspicious story about bonfire.

As for children in Wales, the traditional treat-or-trick is actually a kind of fruit. Can you guess what fruit it is?

From what Dylan talked, you probably as I did finally got a sense of the original Walsh Halloween style. Also, Dylan told me that Halloween in British is more about ghost and spirit. Halloween comes from a Scottish term All Hallows’ Eve, the evening before All Hallow. It is the last day of harvest and darkness is about to come. Americans definitely put more commercial values on Halloween, such as sweets, costume cos-play and so on.

After the study of history Halloween, I got to pick my own pumpkin and carved Mr. Smilepump! 

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How much has American culture affected British or Walsh tradition of Halloween is continue to be found out. But in such a globalized planet, no one could just immune from it. Enjoying the diversity may after all be considered as wise choice.

 

 

 

What Is On the Roof

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How many times you’ve been passing by City Hall? Have you ever noticed that there is a wild creature on the roof and has been watching Cardiff for decades?

The ‘mysterious’ creature is a Welsh dragon! It sits on the dome of the City Hall. And because this dragon is so proud that you can’t possibly take a close look without a binoculars. My college Sandister has done some research on that.

This Welsh dragon was designed by three architects, Henry Vaughan Lanchester, Stewart and Rickards. However, it was sculpted by Henry Charles Fehr. Back to early 19th, it actually took five years, from 1901 to 1906, of creating this stone made dragon.

Next time, when you walk by the City Hall, you might want to look up and have an eye contact with this proud fierce Welsh dragon.

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A close look of this lovely creature.

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Sandister with her baby dragon!

 

Is Chinese equals to Copy Cat?

I really hope this was just simply one of the stereotypes of China. But based on what we did in last several decades, it sounds like us.

Then I start to ask myself, are Chinese people born to be copy cats? I simply don’t agree with that idea. Two thousand years ago, there were 4 brilliant inventions, the compass, gunpowder, paper and movable-type printing, invented by ancient Chinese. Not to mention numerous china listing in British Museum. All of these are absolutely original. Image

So we used to be a creative nation! Good to know 😉 Then how come all of a sudden there are so many kick-offs in Chinese market.

Is that because the way we have been taught? It could be. In my memory, only a few people want to be different in China. When I was little, I liked to be a host. As I was a monitor back then, I organized all the class events and hosted some of the school activities in higher grades. But when I entered middle school, my parents suggested me focus on my study instead of being a little bit something in class. And teachers wouldn’t want their students to get involved in too much social activities, children who like dancing or singing would be regarded as poor students. Although I still became a TV host on campus station in middle school, and my diploma degree also have something to do with broadcasting. Nevertheless  I assume the way parents and teachers led to were quite singleness. It somehow diminishes many children’s talent and turns them into a boring copy machines ( it is not that pathetic as it sounds, because these machines can survive by doing some less creative work).

Having said this, I still don’t think education is the primary reason. I assume the economy still plays an indispensable role. The purpose China have Gaokao, on one hand, the country wish to select talents, on the other hand, it is indeed one of the best ways to jump out of where you came from for many families. Since the medical care system in China isn’t sophisticated enough, a good way to ensure a proper elder life is having a smart, well-paid child. (In this content, I assume you know we Chinese view filial piety extremely high.) In order to achieve this goal, the parents kind  of push their children to study as hard as they could. Because of the developing medical care system, people would not want o risk their professional careers to some imagination-related work( many old people believe this sort of work is unsteadily ). Consequently, many Chinese just wind up with an ordinary life.

However, thing has been changed. GDP in China still leads a rather high figure, and every family’s living condition is much better than ever. This is a bright sign that more people get to pick whatever they like without too much draw-back. I believe imitate it a method to learn good skills as long as you give the credit to the original creator. When we get to the hang of that, and the people have more confident in future, China is ready to CREATE.

 

 

Quickest Way to Check Out Cardiff University’s Diversity

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Cardiff University has been claiming itself as a quite international school. This is easy for a headmaster of the college to say so, and this is easy for a Cardiff University student to say so. But how can the public to feel the diversity of this one of the best Universities in Wales? Here comes the St David’s Student Lock-In, which is the event gathered majority students.

St David’s is a Cardiff city center shopping mall. Hundreds of world-known brands located here. On October 8th, 8:00 pm, St David’s Students Lock-In official started.All the students got 20 percent off of the original  prices, and some shops even offered half price for selected items. The discount seems rather appealing to college students, therefore, almost everyone in Cardiff Uni was pretty excited about this coming event.

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Eight past twenty, as you can see from the above picture. There are already numerous students shopping in the mall. Many of them are still having their backpacks with them because they just got off from class. A Chinese student from Cardiff University, Chen, said that she didn’t want to miss out this big mid-season sale, so she just rushed out from school and went straight away to here.

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Most retailer have offered their best deal for students. In Boots, the discount are rare in most time of the year.  But tonight, they give out 10% for all the items along with small gifts. Sarah is a saler in Givenchy fragrance. According to her, tonight is really worthwhile to spend money. For example, a Givenchy Play fragrance’s(50ml) usual price is £51, but today you get 10% off, besides, the brand will send 4 samples, a Givenchy mirror as well as a make-up bag. 

An interesting thing to notice, although the sale is big, many international students think the British items are much more expensive than their home countries’ deals. Kathryn from the United States claims that most international products have a similar price as American ones, however, the dollars are weaker than pounds. So things here are slightly more expensive than States. As for those American brand, such as Apple, Gap, ect., US definitely offers a more approachable price. In terms of Chinese customers, me,  cloth are rather cheap while some makeups and electronics tend to have a similar expense. 

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Many DJs and events are going on meanwhile.

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That is me and my trophies 😛

From the equator to Cardiff

Everyone has their own first impression about Cardiff.  Many people find it quite cold.

But for a girl from somewhere near the equator, will the cold seem even worse?

Sandister is an MA international journalism student from Ghana. Her first impression of Cardiff was definitely the temperature.

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The good thing is that she finds Cardiff people very friendly. Hopefully, the friendship will warm her up.

By interveiwing Sandister, I learned that audio is rather important in radio journalism. You must know how to use the equipment correctly.