Program will highlight Chinese experience
By DIANE GASPER-O'BRIEN
Ann Adams started an international club at Hays High School not long after she began teaching there nearly 15 years ago.
Now in semi-retirement, Adams vows to keep the organization alive.
HHS' International Club will sponsor a three-part series of public presentations called "Welcome to Your Community: Hays-China Connections" during the next three months.
Part One, "Study in China," is set for Monday in the Hays High lecture hall, 2300 E. 13th. All three sessions will begin at 7 p.m. and last approximately an hour.
The first session will feature Fort Hays State University students who have spent anywhere from a month to a year studying in China. They will relate their experiences as members of the foreign exchange program.
Part Two, scheduled for Nov. 19, is titled "Hosting an International Student." It will feature Hays families that have participated in the Friendship Families program, which provides personal connections for international students during their stay in Hays.
Adams, who taught German and Latin courses at Hays High since 1999, started the international club in 2000 and wanted to revive it this year.
Following the 2012-13 school year, Adams decided to teach part-time and still teaches Latin classes at HHS.
She got the idea to connect with the Office of Strategic Partnerships at Fort Hays State University to help with speakers.
"I saw this was something I could tap into and hopefully become a strategic partner with them," Adams said. "I just wanted to explore this; it was something fairly easy to do because they had the students."
"I've always been interested in China," she added, "and with this, we have the perfect opportunity to learn about China without ever leaving Hays."
The final presentation on Dec. 17 -- "Diverse China -- Student Perspectives on their Homelands" -- will feature the FHSU Chinese Student Association, from which students will share information about their homes in various regions of China.
"There are several students from different areas of China," Adams said. "A lot of people don't realize how diverse China is; there are 56 different ethnic groups and a lot of different dialects."
All sessions are free and open to the public.
"I hope parents are willing to come, too," Adams said.
Besides being interesting topics, Adams said "it will give them an idea of what opportunities are out there" for exchange programs.