I. Impressive Courses
A. The market economy
As teacher taught to us,the market economy is an economic system in which the decisions regarding investment, production, and distribution are guided by the price signals created by the forces of supply and demand. The major characteristic of a market economy is the existence of factor markets that play a dominant role in the allocation of capital and the factors of production.
Market economies range from minimally regulated "free market" and laissez-faire systems—where state activity is restricted to providing public goods and services and safeguarding private ownership—to interventionist forms where the government plays an active role in correcting market failures and promoting social welfare. State-directed or dirigiste economies are those where the state plays a directive role in guiding the overall development of the market through industrial policies or indicative planning—which guides but does not substitute the market for economic planning—a form sometimes referred to as a mixed economy.
Market economies are contrasted with planned economies where investment and production decisions are embodied in an integrated economy-wide economic plan by a single organizational body that owns and operates the economy’s means of production.
After getting acknowledge of the basic conceptions of the market economy, we then did a role play game, namely, we were the shareholders that attain a large amount of cash and a piece of share at the very beginning of the game, then some of us were randomly offered accurate market information about some shares, such as their prices or trends of their values in the coming days, so those who have attained information might be great probability to sell or purchase their shares with others. Games lasted for five rounds, each round had their unique situations and rules, and we ourselves enjoyed much in this game for vividly knew a little about the process of market economy.
B. British table manners & Speaking Accent
In this course, I met my favorite teacher in this program Ms. Clare, which is a humorous and acknowledgeable lady. With different accents in UK, I have deeply felt the cultural difference in this country, from north to south, people with variable accents and customs, very interesting!
Also, table manners course led us how to behave well in British tea shops , especially in formal situations,which is really different from those in China.
C. Introduction to Philosophy
This course mainly focus on the central problems involved in political philosophy and the past attempts to respond to these problems. Jonathan Wolff looks at the works of Plato, Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Mill, Marx, and Rawls (among others), examining how the debates between philosophers have developed, and searching for possible answers to these provocative questions. The teacher looked at more recent issues, particularly feminist political theory.
D. Job Interview
Dr. Joe has taught us this lesson with slow path and vivid examples, the course mainly focused on the interviewing principles and rules in England, particularly in applying professions in universities, such as teacher assistance, career guidance and other jobs. What impressed me most is that the teacher referred there’s no discrimination in gender in interviews, for instance, if a lady has pregnant, she also has right to get the job if her working capability has reached the requirement with great performance.
E. Writing Skills
This course was impressed me a lot, which is a pretty unforgettable writing lesson, the experience is unique.
At the beginning of the lesson, the teacher Mr. Rick, had divided us into six groups, we saw that there were six pieces of brief notes sticking on the wall, with requirements of writing essays on it. Our mission was to discuss altogether with the essays and wrote our ideas on the notes, after finishing one, turned to the next, finished all six essays, the mission ended. With group members came up ideas together, the horizon and our thoughts were also expanded meanwhile. Being alone with a topic sometimes have difficulties in creating innovates, with companies, however, increasing the efferences and working rate of the same task.
II. Beautiful View sights
A. On the air---The night view of Pairs
B. On the air---Overlooking London
C. Walking---Street sights in Cambridge
The history of Cambridge
In 1349 Cambridge was affected by the Black Death. Few records survive but 16 of 40 scholars at King's Hall died. The town north of the river was severely affected being almost wiped out. Following further depopulation after a second national epidemic in 1361, a letter from the Bishop of Ely suggested that two parishes in Cambridge be merged as there were not enough people to fill even one church. With more than a third of English clergy dying in the Black Death, four new
colleges were established at the university over the following years to train new clergymen, namely Gonville Hall, Trinity Hall, Corpus Christi and Clare.
In 1382 a revised town charter effects a "diminution of the liberties that the community had enjoyed", due to Cambridge's participation in the Peasants' Revolt. The charter transfers supervision of baking and brewing, weights and measures, and forestalling and regrating, from the town to the university. King's College Chapel, was begun in 1446 by King Henry VI. The chapel was built in phases by a succession of kings of England from 1446 to 1515, its history intertwined with the Wars of the Roses, and completed during the reign of King Henry VIII. The building would become synonymous with Cambridge, and currently is used in the logo for the City Council.
Following repeated outbreaks of pestilence throughout the 16th Century, sanitation and fresh water were brought to Cambridge by the construction of Hobson's Conduit in the early 1600s. Water was brought from Nine Wells, at the foot of the Gog Magog Hills, into the center of the town.
Cambridge played a significant role in the early part of the English Civil War as it was the headquarters of the Eastern Counties Association, an organization administering a regional East Anglian army, which became the mainstay of the Parliamentarian military effort before the formation of the New Model Army. In 1643 control of the town was given by Parliament to Oliver Cromwell, who had been educated at Sidney Sussex College. The town's castle was fortified and garrisoned with troops and some bridges were destroyed to aid its defense. Although Royalist forces came within 2 miles (3 km) of the town in 1644, the defenses were never used and the garrison was stood down the following year.
D. Cambridge University & Fitzwilliam College
Cambridge is formed from a variety of institutions which include 31 constituent Colleges and over 100 academic departments organized into six schools, which is quite different from universities in China. Cambridge University Press, a department of the university, is the world's oldest publishing house and the second-largest university press in the world. The university also operates eight cultural and scientific museums, including the Fitzwilliam Museum, as well as a botanic garden. Cambridge's libraries hold a total of around 15 million books, eight million of which are in Cambridge University Library, a legal deposit library. It’s a pity that public library in Cambridge is not allowed tourists to enter since 2016, only permitted by academic visitors and students or stuff.
Fitzwilliam College (often abbreviated "Fitz") is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Cambridge, England. The college traces its origins back to 1869 and the foundation of the Non-Collegiate Students Board, a venture intended to offer students from less financially privileged backgrounds a chance to study at the university.
The institution was originally based at Fitzwilliam Hall (later renamed Fitzwilliam House), opposite the Fitzwilliam Museum in central Cambridge. Having moved to its present site in the north of the city, Fitzwilliam attained collegiate status in 1966. Female undergraduates were first admitted in 1978, around the time most colleges were first admitting women. Six members of Fitzwilliam College have received a Nobel Prize. Notable alumni include former Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew, Liberal Democrats leader Sir Vince Cable, former Chancellor of the Exchequer Norman Lamont, Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham, Supreme Court Justice Sir David Kitchin, Queen Sofía of Spain, historian David Starkey, Nobel Prize -winning physiologist Albert Szent-Györgyi, Indian revolutionary leader Subhas Chandra Bose, former World Bank Chief Economist Joseph Stiglitz, and economist Angus Deaton.Fitzwilliam is now home to around 450 undergraduates, 300 graduate students and 90 fellows.
To my surprise, colleges in Cambridge is quite SMALL. Gates of each college cannot be found very obviously! It is the greatest difference from Chinese Colleges. Then having courses, each classroom is designed for the maximum amount is 30 people, also many session rooms are applied for having academic sessions or seminars by teachers and students, which has brought great convenience to us students. Beautiful plants were decorated campus with more green and good smell, and there’s also a testing room(a room usually used for students to take tests)named trust room, a very vivid name~
E. Oxford University & Pembroke college
In the early seventeenth century, the endowment of Thomas Tesdale—a merchant from nearby Abingdon – and Rev. Richard Wightwick, the parish priest of Donnington, Shropshire – enabled the conversion of Broadgates Hall, which had been a University hostel for law students since its construction in the fifteenth century, to form the basis of a fully-fledged college. The letters patent to found the college were signed by King James I in 1624, with the college being named after William Herbert, 3rd Earl of Pembroke, Lord Chamberlain, Chancellor of the University, and rumoured patron of William Shakespeare.
Following its foundation, the college proceeded to expand around Broadgates, building what is now known as "Old Quad" in the 1600s. Built in stages through the seventeenth century out of the local Cotswold limestone, space restrictions saw the south-side of the Quad built directly on top of the old City Wall. A Chapel was built in 1732, and the introduction of further accommodation in 1846, and the Hall in 1848 to designs by Exeter-based architect John Hayward created "Chapel Quad"—widely considered one of the most beautiful Quads in the University. The Chapel was designed and built by William Townsend, although the interior was dramatically redesigned by Charles Kempe—a Pembroke graduate—in 1884. Pembroke alumnus Dr. Damon Wells is a significant benefactor of the College over many years; he enabled the restoration of the Chapel in 1972, and continues to support the Chaplaincy and History Fellowship. The Chapel which is still used for regular worship bears his name.
The history of Oxford
The history of Oxford in England dates back to its original settlement in the Saxon period. Originally of strategic significance due to its controlling location on the upper reaches of the River Thames at its junction with the River Cherwell, the town grew in national importance during the early Norman period, and in the late 12th century became home to the fledgling University of Oxford. So it is quite familiar with the origin in Cambridge.
The University rose to dominate the town entirely, and by the middle of the 14th century the history of the town was effectively no more than a footnote to the history of the university. A heavily ecclesiastical town, Oxford was greatly affected by the changes of the English Reformation, emerging as the seat of a bishopric and a full-fledged city. During the English Civil War, Oxford housed the court of Charles I.
The city began to grow industrially during the 19th century, and had an industrial boom in the early 20th century, with major printing and car-manufacturing industries. These declined, along with other British heavy industry, in the 1970s and 1980s, leaving behind a city which had developed far beyond the university town of the past.
Because of the arrangement, we have limited time to be in London, for about two days. One day the program leaders guided us to the British Museum, because of the bad traffic, we only have 2.5 hours walking around the museum, it is in a real hurry. Then in the afternoon, we visited the London Eye, a Ferris Wheel with the highest view in London, you can overlook the city sights all in your control.
The other day we went to London in the free day during the busy course, we changed the plan to take the train instead of the bus. Railway system in UK is complex and ancient, the service on the train, however, is much better than in China. The fare is also variable, there’re two main types: peak fare and off-peak fare. Obviously, peak fare is more expensive, usually in two times than off-peak. Trains with higher speed and less stops are in higher price. In addition, even taking off-peak and slow train, the price is still CRAZY! But I looked up on the Internet for some research, I found that welfare in this country for workers or retired people and disabled individals includes transportation fare, they can enjoy the journey in a lower price.
The weather wasn’t good, rainy and a little cold, so we didn’t have great mood towalk outside a lot. We firstly went around the Hyde Park, saw some cute animals and splendid rainy and short-sunny scenery. In the afternoon we went to the Sherlocks Street to visit the celebrated detective’s old house. After that, it was near the train’s departure time(Time went so FAST!).We headed for the Oxford St and Regent St, the two prior shopping street in London. Though raining heavily, it was still crowed, maybe British people have more passion or enthusiasm in rainy days for shopping. The security was unbelievable, some of our program members have claimed that they had lost some money or got robbed.
All in all, it is a little regret that we didn’t have enough time to experience the biggest city in England, maybe next time to hang out, or maybe not. -_-
G. The Blenheim Palace—ancestral home of Winston Churchill
The palace is named for the 1704 Battle of Blenheim, and thus ultimately after Blindheim (also known as Blenheim) in Bavaria. It was originally intended to be a reward to John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough for his military triumphs against the French and Bavarians in the War of the Spanish Succession, culminating in the Battle of Blenheim. Soon after construction began it became the subject of political infighting, leading to Marlborough's exile, the fall from power of his duchess, and lasting damage to the reputation of the architect Sir John Vanbrugh.
Designed in the rare, and short-lived, English Baroque style, architectural appreciation of the palace is as divided today as it was in the 1720s. It is unique in its combined use as a family home, mausoleum and national monument. The palace is notable as the birthplace and ancestral home of Sir Winston Churchill.
Following the palace's completion, it became the home of the Churchill, later Spencer-Churchill, family for the next 300 years, and various members of the family have wrought changes to the interiors, park and gardens. At the end of the 19th century, the palace was saved from ruin by funds gained from the 9th Duke of Marlborough's marriage to American railroad heiress Consuelo Vanderbilt.
III. Personal Experiences & Sentiment
Unconsciously, the 20-day trip to the UK is over. Talking about the harvest, many have been countless. Then I’ll talk about some of the things that I am most interested in and impressed me most.
First, my oral English has been improved. As the less-Asian countries, the Chinese are less distributed, so English has become the primary weapon in the country. This is a big challenge for me who first arrived in Europe. I admit that I was ashamed at first, but the project team gave us a warm-up, let us adapt to the British culture and language through the classroom, with the help of professional language teachers. This makes me very interested in this country, I am slowly becoming brave, willing to communicate with the locals, sometimes I will be happy, sometimes they may not want to pay attention to you, it does not matter, because I have experienced pure British culture, this is worth it.
Second, the teachers of the project team are also very enthusiastic and responsible. They always give patient answers and help for difficult problems. Outside the classroom, we went to the bar to drink and talk, and of course most of the time they spoke, we listened. (^_^) It is worth mentioning that these teachers are also travelers with rich travel experiences. They don't work very steadily, usually they earn wages through work, spend the money at the place where they work, and then go to the next place. From here, we can see that foreigners' freedom, casual and positive attitude towards life, and the spirit of courage to try, are worthy of our respect and study.
Third, the British pub is really fascinating. The bar here is not a nightclub, but a place where people have a drink, chat and have fun. We met an old man in a jazz bar. He is a jazz singer and is 76 years old this year. After the performance, he forced the instrument to move in the direction of his car. We wanted to help but was rejected by him. He said that this was his life's love. If he had enough strength, he must come and take it by himself. Touching people!
Finally, I would like to thank the project team for letting me meet some friends. Although I was in a foreign country for a short time, the companionship of my friends made this trip no longer monotonous, but full of fun and happiness. I also hope that I can have a long-lasting friendship with my friends and keep in touch.