During the current online teaching period, tutors from one of Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University’s student clubs, the International Business Language Culture Association (ILCA), hosted a series of classes to help fellow students learn more about different languages.

XJTLU students could sign up for Korean, Russian and Hindi classes, all delivered online from fellow students. We caught up with a few of the tutors to hear more about the programme.

Alexey Guro, BSc Environmental Science
Russian tutor

Where are you from?
I am from Russia, and I’ve been in China for about three years now.

What’s your favourite part of teaching Russian?
I like teaching new subjects to people because they can always teach me something back, whether it is the way I can improve as a tutor/teacher, or some interesting things about their culture or history.

What phrase in Russian do you love?
One of my favourite phrases is “завтра уже сегодня”. The translation is rather simple: tomorrow is today. It is a paradox that makes me value time and avoid staying on social media for too long.

Arushi Agrawal, BA Marketing
Hindi tutor

Where are you from?
I’m from India, but I was brought up in China. I’ve been here for 20 years already.

Why did you decide to join this programme?
I wanted to make new friends and gain experience. I also wanted to create a friendly and highly productive language class. This is like a language exchange, which is a great chance for us tutors, and the students will also get to learn different languages with native speakers.

What’s your favourite part of teaching Hindi?
I like when we talk about culture because we get to find out more about different cultures while exchanging languages.

Sunju Kwon, BEng Electrical Engineering
Korean tutor

Where are you from?
I'm from South Korea, and it has been eight months since I came to China.

What’s your favourite part of teaching Korean?
It makes me think about my mother language in ways I’ve never thought before, such as the nuances and grammar. I also love when students tell me my class is useful and they want to keep learning Korean.

What is one word or phrase in your language that you love?
“악으로 깡으로.” It means I will persevere even if it is difficult. It’s meaningful because it reminds me not to give up just because something is difficult.

Daniil Mikriukov, BEng Data Science and Big Data Technology with Contemporary Entrepreneurialism
Russian tutor

Where are you from?
I am from Ufa, a city in the heart of Russia. I’ve never been to China, and I can't wait for the opportunity to go.

What’s your favourite part of teaching Russian?
I enjoy seeing interested students in every lesson, who are willing to learn more aspects of the Russian language and culture.

What phrase in Russian do you love?
I always liked this fragment from the poem The Prophet, by the great Russian writer Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin: “… Глаголом жги сердца людей.” This means that the purpose of a true artist’s word is to appeal to people’s minds and hearts.

By Patricia Pieterse
Edited by Xinmin Han
Photos courtesy of Alexey Guro, Arushi Agrawal, Sunju Kwon and Daniil Mikriukov

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