John France, Founder of Langports, partnered with Blue Dragon in Hanoi, Vietnam and successfully launched the SAYL (Study Abroad Year at Langports) Scholarship for disadvantaged students who have completed their studies with Blue Dragon. The students are selected by Blue Dragon after very careful consideration that involves multiple factors. Upon arriving in Australia, the students are greeted by John and Susie (John's wife) and are then welcomed into a Homestay family. They stay with the family for their first six months, before transferring to student accommodation. By doing this it provides them with even more experiences whilst completing their time here. During their year they will study at one of the three Langports schools - Brisbane, the Gold Coast or Sydney and will attend activities and functions with other students.
We are now into our third successful year which proudly saw us welcome not one, but two SAYL Scholarship Students thanks to our generous Friends and supporters of the Foundation. Trong 2 and Quy arrived in February and settled easily into Brisbane and on the Gold Coast and have been having a fantastic time. You can read more about what they have been up to by visiting our blog page here.
2018 - 2019 SAYL Scholarship Student - Tai
February 2018 saw us welcome Tai, our second SAYL Scholarship recipient, to Brisbane. Tai was 19 years old and came to us from Hanoi, Vietnam after being a part of the Blue Dragon Children's Foundation since he was 10 years old. You can read the Blue Dragon story on Tai by clicking here.
After being welcomed by John and Susie at the airport he was taken to his homestay family where he quickly and easily settled in ready to begin his Langports journey. His English skills were at Level 2 - Elementary - and he was enthusiastic and ready to start learning
He made many friends whilst studying at Langports Brisbane and immersed himself in the extra curricular activities too. He attended every activity that he could, he assisted with student BBQ's, went on day trips to destinations such as Byron Bay, he held dance lessons for other students, attended social evenings and most notably used his exceptional dancing skills to choreograph and lead the Brisbane Cheerleading Team to victory in the Langports Games (a yearly sports contest between our Brisbane and Gold Coast schools) Watch the video here.
After his six months in a homestay environment, Tai moved into Student One to share accommodation with other students which he loved. During this time he really became independent by learning to cook and do his washing. After completing his evening studies he would play the piano, play ping pong and generally socialise with other students. Read his blog post here.
Before Tai's time here ended both he and John gave a presentation at all three Langports schools for Sponsors and staff. They shared his story with us and the journey that he had undertaken both in Vietnam and at Langports. He told us how much it meant to him to be part of something life changing, how grateful he was for the opportunity to be able to change his life and was able to thank Sponsors in person which meant a lot to him. You can watch presentation for yourself here.
Tai's graduation was a big affair with both staff and students in attendance to congratuale him on how far he had come since arriving. He had progressed from that Level 2 all the way up to Level 5 - Upper Intermediate. This was due to his hard work and commitment to studying and making the most of the opportunity that he has been given. It is safe to say that he was greatly missed when he departed. During his time here he made a huge impact on both fellow students and staff members with his outgoing, caring and very funny personality.
In February 2019, Tai returned home to Vietnam and has been busy making plans for his future. He is currently working at a travel company as an Operating Assistant, responsible for the electric bike segment. He was able to obtain this job due to his new English speaking skills. Read his update to us here