As part of Centre College’s Centre-in-China program, anthropology and sociology major Eden Gebeyehu ’19 (Boston, Massachusetts) interned this fall at Stepping Stones China, a non-profit organization in Shanghai with a mission to improve the education and general welfare of disadvantaged children.
Gebeyehu worked as a coordinator at one of the migrant schools, as well as at a migrant after-school site, teaching 20 to 56 students per class. She also taught English to students who were unable to learn the language in China.
“I have been interested in the education system since the day I moved to America,” Gebeyehu said. “I was born and raised in Ethiopia and had an Ethiopian education. Moving to America—to a different education style—made me want to learn what other ways there are of teaching.
“In addition, my friend and classmate Veronique Similien ’19 talked about her experience with Stepping Stones China,” she added. “This intrigued me so much that I requested to have an internship position there.”
Gebeyehu said she wanted to continue to expand her knowledge of what the education system looks like in different countries and nations.
“I learned a lot about the hukou system and why non-profit organizations like Stepping Stones exist,” she explained. “I did a research paper for my politics class on the hukou system, because I learned about it during my training for my internship. I wanted to understand it in-depth in order to help the kids who are being affected by it.
“This internship experience has taught me how to be patient with kids or anyone who you are teaching and how to work with other people who have different views and agendas from your own,” she concluded.
by Kerry Steinhofer
December 11, 2018