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Feedback from Students of GSS 2021

1.      Juan Ramon Cai The United States University of California, Berkeley

This Global Summer School has been a very fruitful experience. I think each masterclass has its own unique flavor and the way they present the efforts and progress behind making impactful sustainable development is eye opening. I think the best part of GSS was the people that I meet from all around the world, just having conversations with them, exchanging stories really makes this experience more unique and broadens my perspectives and understanding of the world. Thank you to Tsinghua University.


2.      Irina Semykina Russia University College London

I am Irina and come from Russia and this is actually the second time when I participate in the Tsinghua University Summer School. I am glad to continue to participate it. I like the school for 3 reasons: First of all, active learning. We are not only listening to masterclasses, but also read and explore a lot ourselves to prepare our projectssecond, innovative thinking. Our mentors urge us to look for new solutions to the existing problems; and finally, people. Everyone here is driven and passionate about what they are doing and I’m happy to be a part of it!


3.      Kilian Hikaru Scheutwinkel Germany University of Cambridge

When I first applied to GSS 2021, I didn’t know what to expect and thought it would be a relatively small summer school. But this impression changed immediately once the first day began. Over 1000 like-minded individuals from all over the world gathered together to think about the future challenges to reach the 17 goals of sustainable development formulated by the UN. Before the summer school, I was not aware of this program by the UN and I am glad fully thankful for this opportunity Tsinghua University has offered me.


Within the summer school program, I have chosen the “How AI can help us build an intelligent and sustainable future?” Track. Here I have met many smart and diligent class mates from all over the world to identify the sustainable challenges which we face today and solve them by using AI technologies. We have presented our solutions in front of mentors and examiners from international and national institutions and received valuable feedback for our project.


As my main research as a Ph.D. student is related to A.I. on the technical side, I am glad to participate in a summer school program, which discusses the social benefits of A.I. and the moral and ethics associated with it.


I recommend everyone to apply in the subsequent years to the Tsinghua global summer school to meet and discuss important social issues with smart and educated people from all over the world.


4.      Hoong Hao Yap Malaysia Imperial College London

I am currently taking part in the Tsinghua Global Summer School from London, UK.


Having studied engineering over the last 2 years, it is easy to lose sight of where our work fits into a global perspective and the Tsinghua Global Summer School served as a perfect reminder of what it means to solve relevant and interdisciplinary problems. The last few days has been absolutely insightful - from learning how to handle stress to unravelling an entrepreneurial mindset - none of which I would be able to experience in my degree program.


I chose the hack: Sustainable Solutions for Addressing Environmental Pollution. With the freedom of forming our own teams, I later met my 3 other teammates from Peru, Indonesia and Pakistan to work on the application of Geosynthetics to reduce the percentage of plastics that end up in landfill in China. Every lecture was very insightful and the ability to discuss these topics with my group meant that we had the room to form our own ideas and solutions.


With the Global summer school coming to an end, I believe that my perspective on Sustainable Development has changed drastically. I now strongly believe that we should be as inclusive as possible in deriving innovative solutions. By addressing a problem from multiple viewpoints, only then we can come to a truly rational and justifiable solution.


5.      Miki Kurihara Japan University of Tokyo

My favorite part of GSS is the diversity. A lot of aspirational students gather here from all over the world and spend 9 days together for a better future, which is amazing!


I chose Hack 5 because my research field is astronomy and space and is something that I’m very passionate about. In the team, we realized space psychology could relate to SDG3, which is Good Health and Well-being for all human beings. If we think extreme circumstances in space, there’s no question that we need a breakthrough to ensure our quality of life (QOL). What we need for changing the universe is the power of imagination, creativity, and collaboration. That’s what I learned throughout the activity.


6.      Yun Ting Peng Singapore National University of Singapore

Tsinghua GSS has been very insightful for me. It is very different from other summer programmes, as Tsinghua GSS is based around Masterclasses and the SDG Hackathon, which makes it very interdisciplinary and application-based. I enjoyed Professor Peng's masterclass on "Positive Psychology for the Post-Pandemic Era", as I have never taken a psychology module or heard of positive psychology, and the module is very relevant for the current pandemic. The focus on innovation and sustainability was very meaningful.


The SDG Hackathon has been quite interesting. It is my first time hearing about a hackathon being placed within a summer school, and I love that GSS isn't just about listening or studying, but actively applying our learnings through a project. The Hackathon allows for the GSS to be more interactive, as we get to interact and learn from people with different educations and cultures. Thank you to Tsinghua University.

7.      Yee Man Lau Hong Kong, China Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

I’m very happy to have the opportunity to participate in the summer school programme GSS 2021. It is definitely a good opportunity for me to meet different amazing people around the world especially under the current pandemic situation. Not only do I get the chance to learn, but also the chance to be connected to the world. I'm very grateful to Tsinghua University for giving me this opportunity. I hope it will be better and better.


8.      Yong Kang Chia Singapore Nanyang Technological University

Thank you, Tsinghua University, for providing me with this opportunity to be a part of this virtual exchange. Through the 8 masterclass, I have gained better understanding of the different sustainable goals, from poverty alleviation to education. In order to ensure that our world is a better place to live in, we should all work hand in hand and play a greater role. Thank you!


9.      LOW KAI HEN Malaysia Tsinghua University

Hi, I am an international undergraduate student who will be enrolled in Tsinghua University in the fall, and participated in the Global Summer School 2021 at Tsinghua University. This year's GSS theme was Innovation for Sustainable Development. The masterclasses were interesting, informative and enlightened my creative thinking on the concept. While learning, I also gained many mentors and classmates from all over the world in GSS, expanding my friend circle, and enriching my international perspective. I have gained a lot of useful knowledge and grown a lot during this GSS2021. I hope that this event will contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals in the future.


10.    William Francis Orbell      United Kingdom University of Oxford

I’m very happy to have the opportunity to participate in the summer school programme GSS 2021. There were interesting lectures on a wide range of topics. It was great to have the opportunity to meet people from around the world during the Hack.


I think GSS can adopt more advanced communication tools, such as the Gather program, which can bring people together for communication just like in real life. It can also make students establish closer and more meaningful contact by reducing the number of students on the track.


If the COVID-19 is eliminated in the future, I hope to come to Tsinghua University to participate in the global summer school, face-to-face communication and interaction with erudite professors and like-minded students and make it a much more enriching experience.


11.    Wong Hei Yu Gladys Hong Kong, China The University of Hong Kong

I’m glad to participate in the summer school programme GSS 2021.  From the Sustainable Development Goals and the Chinese economy, to design thinking and the keys to being an innovative leader, GSS has equipped me with the idea to envision a brighter and more sustainable future. Participating in the SDG Hack allowed me to put knowledge into practice. Working with my teammates from different cultural backgrounds with different interests allowed me to broaden my worldview. From their sharing, I learned how various countries and regions around the world are tackling the COVID-19 pandemic. I‘m also very grateful to have encouraging and patient mentors who never fail to answer our challenging questions, sharing their personal experience in public administration and climate change with us. I believe that when we are passionate about making a positive impact in the world, the world can still be connected and united.