Ms. Lin: the fourth Mandarin teacher ever


Ms. Fenny Lin, one of the longest serving Mandarin teachers at TAS. [SHARON LEE/THE BLUE & GOLD]

Ms. Fenny Lin is one of the longest serving Mandarin teachers at TAS. She started working at TAS in 1990, so this year will be her 20th year at TAS.

Before coming to TAS, Ms. Lin worked at the China Youth Corps in Shilin, an association where overseas Chinese or foreign students across ages 13-18 learn Mandarin. She taught there for many years before she decided to teach at TAS.

When she first came, TAS was looking for Mandarin teachers, as there were only three Mandarin teachers in the whole middle and upper school. Ms. Lin therefore decided to work here, and became the fourth Mandarin teacher at TAS. “I felt that the background of the students at TAS will be pretty similar to the backgrounds of the students I taught at China Youth Corps, so I felt that I could take on this new job,” Ms. Lin said.

However, working at TAS was also a challenge she decided to take on. “I have never really experienced the educational systems of international schools, so I was pretty unfamiliar with the school system and the rules, it was also a challenge for me.”

Despite it being a challenge, Ms. Lin truly enjoys working at TAS, primarily because of the students and also the chances that teachers here are provided for self-development.

Ms. Lin feels that students at TAS are very outgoing and close with their teachers, which is why she greatly enjoys interacting with them.

“Some students will come to me asking for advice to their problems, so I feel really close with them,” Ms. Lin said. Besides the intimate relationships she has with students, she feels that students also form close relationships with one another and often help each other out.

Changes that Ms. Lin has witnessed at TAS are the opening of D-block and the Solomon Wong Tech Cube. She also feels that the school is now more open to listening to the ideas of students and making changes according to them.

When Mrs. Lin started working here, she observed many teachers continuing their studies, using summer time as a chance to earn their master’s degree.

Therefore, she decided she would continue to learn. She eventually achieved her master’s degree at Michigan State University. “I’m very grateful for TAS’s great program that encourages teachers to continue their learning and to improve themselves,” she said.