Study Mandarin for (almost) Free in Taiwan
The Huayu Enrichment Scholarship is a scholarship that enables foreign students to study Mandarin for up to one year at a Taiwanese University for little more than the cost of plane ticket. This article explains what the Huayu Enrichment Scholarship is, who is eligible for it, and how to apply for it.
What is the Huayu Enrichment Scholarship?
In 2005 Taiwan’s Ministry of Education created the Huayu Enrichment Scholarship (HES) Program with the following goals:
- Help recipients improve their Mandarin and, consequently appreciate Taiwanese culture
- Promote friendship between Taiwanese and people from other countries
- Create opportunities for exchanges with Universities abroad.
How Much Do I Receive?
The Huayu Scholarship provides the student with a monthly stipend of NT$25,000 (approximately US$750) per month for three months, six months, nine months or one year. The student is expected to pay his/her tuition and living expenses from the stipend.
It is possible for a very thrifty student to pay tuition and all living expenses out of the scholarship, but most students will probably find this just enough money to live comfortably from month to month.
What Will My Expenses Be?
Shared apartments and single suites are available from NT$3000 – NT$8000 per month.
A meal at a local budget restaurant near the University: NT$40-80
A meal at a mid-range Western restaurant: NT$100-250
A beer at a bar: NT$100-150
*Shopping at the local market and cooking at home is a cheaper alternative to eating out.
Bicycles can be purchased for as little as NT$500
Scooters can be purchased for as little as NT$5000
Cars can be purchased for as little as NT$20,000
*Remember these are low-end prices and you will get what you pay for.
How Much is Tuition?
Prices and class sizes and lengths vary from school to school, but the approximate prices are as follows:
The Fall and Spring semesters are three months each and generally cost around NT$30,000 (about US$900 at the time of writing) per semester for 15 hours per week of small group class.
The Summer and Winter semesters are two months each and generally cost around NT$20,000 (about US$600 at the time of writing) for 15 hour per week of small group class.
Am I Eligible?
To be eligible for the scholarship
- Be at least 18 years old.
- Have graduated High School.
- Have had very good grades from your most recent formal education.
You must not:
- Be a Republic of China (ROC) National.
- Be a former student of any college or university in Taiwan.
- Be an exchange student.
- Be a former recipient of this, or any other scholarships from the Taiwan Scholarship Program.
How Do I Apply?
To apply for the Huayu Enrichment Scholarship you are required to submit:
- A completed application form and study plan. You can download the application form here: www.edutw.ca/English/Document/3s_2_2009_2010_Huayu_Enrichment_Scholarship_Application_Form.doc.
- A photocopy of your passport.
- A photocopy of your highest-level diploma and transcript. These must be authenticated by your local Taipei Cultural and Economic Office before they are submitted with your application.
- A photocopy of your (university) language center application.
- Two letters of reference.
- A signed copy of the terms of agreement. You can download the terms of agreement here: www.edutw.ca/English/PDF/3s_2_2009_2010_Huayu_Enrichment_Scholarship_Terms_of_Agreement.pdf.
When Do I Have to Apply?
All application materials must sent to your local Taipei Economic and Cultural Office and be postmarked before March 31.
A complete list of Taipei Economic and Cultural Offices worldwide is available here: www.taiwanembassy.org/dept.asp?mp=1&codemeta=locationIDE#2.
Scholarship awards will be announced by April 30th.