TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A group of foreign individuals who have been granted Mandarin-learning scholarships from Taiwan are pleading with the government to open borders for them amid the coronavirus pandemic.
In a letter addressed to the Ministry of Education (MOE), a host of international nationals who were unable to enter Taiwan for the 2020-2021 academic year asked authorities to consider allowing them in should the nation relax its border control, reported CNA.
They also expressed their wishes to be offered the option of deferring their scholarships to the next academic year and the establishment of a communication channel with the MOE dedicated to resolving their predicament. Taiwan has yet to grant entry of non-degree students as a result of COVID-19 concerns.
The MOE said on Saturday (Feb. 6) whether or not these individuals can enter will hinge on the country’s disease control capability and how the rest of the world is coping with the pandemic.
The Mandarin-learning scholarship program for the 2021-2022 academic year will last from Sept. 1 this year to Aug. 31, 2022, with 529 openings altogether. Those who have been qualified for the program but failed to make it to Taiwan due to the coronavirus are advised to contact Taiwan’s representative offices in their respective countries for more information.
The Mandarin scholarship is available for people from countries with no diplomatic relations with Taiwan. Recipients are able to learn about Taiwanese culture and are given a monthly allowance of NT$25,000 (US$892) during their stay in the East Asian nation, which ranges from two months to one year.