Our friends from Worcester Technical High School left Datong for the states this morning. We are so grateful for all the work they did, and all the laughs we shared. Faculty member Judy Milott wanted to convey the team’s reflections on their experience in Datong.
A few short weeks ago, two faculty and six students from Worcester Technical High School—hereby known as TEAM TECH—embarked on what has truly become a journey of a lifetime. We all had so many questions swirling…What was the country like? How would the people of China react to us? What would our role with Team BEMANY be? What would the food be like? What were our living accommodations? Would we be able to communicate when we were out and about?
Two things, and then some words from the students: First, the way the people of China have treated us has been beyond our expectations. They are kind, respectful, and so friendly. This feeling was everywhere we traveled. They wave, want to know about us, and ask for photos. Second, our team, BEMANY, has treated us as equals, putting us to work the minute we arrived. WTHS students have worked alongside the university students and professors. Building this sustainable home has been an incredible team effort.
Now for some student comments:
Peter — Everyone in China is so nice to all of us. I also noticed that there are no lines in stores. Because of the conversion rate, electronics are more affordable.
Melinda — I found that we could travel over 12,000 miles and people from all over the world are very similar in so many ways. We expected some kind of culture shock and couldn’t believe how easy it was to integrate.
Tony — This was the trip of a lifetime. I never in my wildest dreams expected to be directing a crane in China.
Tim — I was proud to be part of the team and be welcomed by Team BEMANY. I was also honored to lead our team at the opening ceremony.
Alicia — It was great to see that with over 20 countries represented, all the teams supported one another and offered to help their neighbors.
Brandon — What an incredible experience it was to be part of Team BEMANY! It was a great working experience.
The leader of TEAM TECH was John Langevin. He did everything from guiding the atrium in place, carpentry (Team Tech built the handicap ramp) to building a walkway. What an inspiration for the students! When asked to do something, his motto for the kids was “Let’s roll.” He also rides a mean tandem bike!
As we prepare for our trip home, we have such mixed emotions. We can’t wait to be reunited with our families, yet there is a collective sense of sadness as we leave our teammates and all of the new friends we have made. We are so thankful for this experience and wish Team BEMANY great luck!
With gratitude—John, Judy, Peter, Melinda, Anthony, Tim, Alicia, Brandon.