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How can there be peace without people understanding each other, and how can this be if they don’t know each other?

Lester B.Pearson

Early supporter of Pearson College, former Prime Minister of Canada, and Nobel Peace Laureate

The striking feature of the UWC is that they embrace the entire world. They are unique and they are conscious of their responsibilities.

Nelson Mandela

Late Honorary President of UWC, Former President of South Africa

We have realized our dream to create a dream school for you. Please go out and realize your dream and other’s dreams.

Wesley Chiu,

Member of UWC National Committee of China, board member of UWC Changshu China

The sense of idealism and a purposeful life really makes the UWC experience unique and its impact life-long.

Wang Yi

Co-Founder, Vice Chairman of Board and Executive Director of Harvard Centre Shanghai. Pearson 89-91

UWC was one of the ten members of the international schools association that created the International Baccalaureate Organization in Geneva in 1963 … today, they are taken in over 4,000 schools worldwide and have become the gold standard for university entrance.

Sir John Daniel

Chair of UWC International Board and International Council 

I regard it as the foremost task of education to ensure the survival of these qualities: an enterprising curiosity, an undefeatable spirit, tenacity in pursuit, readiness for sensible self-denial and above all, compassion.

Kurt Hahn

German Educator, Founder of United World Colleges

What does UWC education mean to me?

Issue date:2017-10-09

Ziqi Wei, Alumnus of UWC Changshu China (2015-2017) 

Note: Mark is the English name of the founder and Chairman of UWC Changshu China

Translated by: Chuah Yueh Qi, Member of Media Group Zhixing

Dear Mark,

Soon, I will be boarding the flight. As I write this letter at the airport, my heart is full of gratitude. Being able to graduate from UWC and undergo such extraordinary experience is a blessing, and I want to express my gratitude towards all the people I have met in UWC, including you, my fellow teachers and friends, and many others who have showered me with selfless care and help.

I think that the meaning of life is to undergo varied experiences from which we can reflect and grow. There is no doubt that up to now, UWC has been the most unique experience for me and has had the biggest impact on my life. UWC came into my life as a happy accident. From the time when I happened to hear about UWC, till I finally became a member of the community, I went through an arduous process, thus, this is the reason why I am even more grateful and will always cherish this memory. Before I begin my new journey, I want to share with everyone what I learned through my amazing two years at UWC.

From time to time, people would ask me the same question,“What is UWC? What did you get from the experience?” I always find these questions tough to answer, as the possible replies are as varied as the thousands of people who have gone through the journey. I thought about this question again and again, but I didn’t find a perfect answer. It was on the day I graduated and left school that I came to a deeper understanding of the significance of the UWC experience, and here, I will sum up my reflections on UWC as “Redefining the relationships between people and the world, and the relationship among individuals”.

From the perspective of “people and the world”, UWC gave me an opportunity to develop my values. The values formed in this environment have a solid foundation and the sense of mission is firm. We learnt to take a global view and act for the benefit of the entire world. UWC alumni are the world’s most disparate group of people. Because alumni come from all corners of the world, representing most of the countries and regions, not only are the cultures and languages diverse but the types of professions are myriad. It is a wonder that such a varied group of people can join efforts to achieve one goal——to bring peace and a sustainable future to the world (UWC mission). Is this not the best demonstration and evidence of this great value system? 

On the other hand, with regard to“relationship among individuals”, although we did not get formal training on communication skills in UWC, we learned, partly through our residential life, how to communicate with people from different cultures and backgrounds. The most important thing is that I learned how to understand and appreciate differences in the world. I learned that when appreciating others I should also appreciate myself. However, appreciation does not necessarily imply approval, nor does it imply that our rights to think independently should be surrendered; thus, I am constantly reflecting critically on various issues.

Even though my life at UWC has come to an end, I do not feel I have graduated from UWC. On the contrary, my education has only just begun. It is just like a door, which leads to many more doors and experiences. I believe that the world behind each successive door is where the sun shines the brightest. 


8:20pm, 29.8.2017 

Chicago O’hare International Airport

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