Source: Vitória Fong, aluna de português: “Primeira impressão que tive da língua foi muito boa” [Hojemacau] 1 July 2016
Vitória Fong likes learning languages. In the beginning, the recent graduate student of Portuguese Studies did not know why she had decided to study the language of Camões. However, the fact that she had been offered the Principals’ Recommended Admission to study at the University of Macau where she was considered as one of the best students of Portuguese, now shows that the choice was right.
After four years of studies, she speaks Portuguese fluently. This youngster had also been admitted to English Studies but had to decide on only one programme since UM only allows one option. Vitória, explains to us the reason of the choice.
“I thought that Portuguese being an official language it could be more advantageous than English studies, hence I opted for the language of Camões”, she said with a smile.
Regarding the difficulty to study this language, Vitória tells that the attitude to learning is something very important. “Even if a student has good resources like, teachers, materials and others, but if you do not have a positive attitude, or you do not have any interest in studying, you will be unable to study the language well”, she explains to Hoje Macau.
Vitória gives us an example: A Chinese professor of Portuguese language is important for the students as it “creates a base” for them even though the Chinese students cannot depend much on these Chinese professors, otherwise the proficiency of speaking the Portuguese language will not improve.
“I started at the basic level in Portuguese and the first impression that I had on the Portuguese language was very good, my professor was very kind and this changed the concept which I had regarding the professors”, said the local youngster who won the best student prize of the Casa de Portugal in 2015.
Besides the prize, Vitória achieved a good grade during her studies in UM. What is the secret for this? “A great deal of attention in class, along with some effort out of class”, she told us. “I am not very hard working, but I pay attention to what the professors say and follow their instructions, and sometimes I read what interests me.”
THE FUTURE IN MACAU S.A.R.
Regarding the future for the graduates of Portuguese Studies, Vitória said that most of her colleagues wish to be translators in the civil services, but this is also not easy: Currently they can only look for a job without any relationship with the language because there are not much opportunities. Besides, some colleagues consider that they do not have sufficient qualification to look for a job which is based on Portuguese and therefore choose other areas.
However, the 22 year old has her plans set out: She would like to be a professor of Portuguese, since she has completed her bachelor degree and wants to dedicate herself to the area of education. But Vitória is still pursuing her career: She will continue her studies in UM and has enrolled in the Master of Linguistics since there is no course being offered for Education in Portuguese in the territory.
“The institutions require higher qualification for this profession like 5 years of educational experience or a certificate of a course of education in Portuguese, however, in the interior of China the case is not the same and some master graduates can teach in the faculties or at colleges of foreign languages.” She further adds that the Government could offer more teaching opportunities for the residents to do some internships.
BETWEEN MACAU AND PORTUGAL
Born in Macau, Vitória recognizes that there is an obvious difference between western and eastern education. She relates that she went on an academic exchange program in Coimbra and that she saw the children were very happy playing out there, something which never happens in Macau, which shows that there is a lot of difference in the method of education between the two territories. Despite this, the youngster prefers to study Portuguese in Macau because she thinks that the territory of Macau provides all that Portugal does in the teaching of Portuguese.