67901083 2449713488425455 1949808216288264192 n 300x226A dream that they never thought could come true has become a reality for five Walter Sisulu University Tourism Management students, who will be traveling to China to participate in the Homestay in Jinhua’s Historic Villages for a 2- week exchange programme.

The students; Pumeza Somerset, Kwanele Xelitole, Lukhanyo Mashabalala, Luzuko Gwampi and Apiwe Magwa will share a cultural exchange experience organized by the Jinhua Municipal People’s Government Foreign and

The project was  initiated to promote tourism in the villages of China by using idle village resources. The project invites students from all over the world to stay for a period of 2 to 3 weeks and experience the authentic Chinese culture in one of the villages of Jinhua.

Second year tourism student Lukahyo Mashabalala said what he looks forward to the most on the trip is the exchange of different cultural knowledge and friendships that will be formed.

“What is exciting the most about this trip is that we are going to meet different people there with different cultures and backgrounds so we will be able to teach them about our culture and have them teach us too,” he said.

During their stay in Jinhua, the students will be allowed to have discussions on strategies the villages can use to attract more tourists plus teach and share information on their cultures, heritage, lifestyle and cuisine.

The students said they were excited and honored to be chosen to represent WSU and the BCM at the exchange programme.

“Besides being chosen for the programme, I am most excited about flying to China because it will be my first time travelling by airplane and so far I think that will be the highlight of the trip,” Said Apiwe Magwa.

As tourism students, travelling and sightseeing falls as part of the courses requirements. The students say that this has been the best opportunity for them to finally use what they have learnt in the classroom.

Luzuko Gwampi said “This will definitely test us to see if we can survive in a different country and it certainly will have a positive reflection on our CV’s.”

The trip has been fully funded by Jinhua Municipal Government and Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality.

By Xolelwa Dwesini.