If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy.
Then he becomes your partner
Nelson Mandela

UWC Maastricht Alumni

Vivi Lin

Vivi Lin a passionate young lady with a big dream: becoming a surgeon for Doctors without Borders.

Taiwan as a whole has one of the most complete healthcare systems in the world, however, there is still a large gap in access to healthcare as the majority of doctors are centred in the capital, whilst too few doctors are available in the countryside. Vivi’s interest lies in helping to lessen this gap, not only in Taiwan but around the world.

She would like to go to the UK for medical school, to Edinburgh, where she hopes to focus on infectious diseases. Currently, Vivi is looking for various funders in order to continue on to University and has successfully begun to raise funds for her medical degree. Her ultimate intention is to put herself where she is most needed.

Before coming to UWC Maastricht, Vivi lived in Taiwan with her parents, who are both teachers. Due to this upbringing, education has always been very important in her life. After having completed her High School in Taiwan, Vivi went to Lesotho to teach younger students English, Chinese & Global Health. This experience opened her eyes to the commonalities between Lesotho and Taiwan, one of the most important one’s being the sense of community found in both societies. This experience in many ways inspired her to further engage with the world, and hence her interest in UWC grew.

In 2016, Vivi was lucky enough to receive a scholarship to attend UWC Maastricht, a huge honour in her eyes, and one which makes her recognize the many others in need of this kind of support. In addition to this, Vivi crowdfunded in order to pay for her flights to and from the college and to top up the scholarship she received.

For Vivi, UWC is all about opening your mind. There is a misconception that people have that travelling is equivalent to having a global view, but really, you need to work more in depth and have conversations with people to gain a deeper understanding. She now understands issues very differently and sees the power that lies indifference. At UWC, everyone is different, but they work together, and the difference is not an obstacle.

While at UWC, Vivi worked with Knooppunt and Dream Givers, as well as founding Human Library Maastricht. She is very active with the various conferences and talks, including delivering workshops during the International Peace Conference and the Global Entrepreneurship Week. Vivi has been on a journey of growth here at UWC, and it has sparked her to further develop her own ideas on how to have an impact back home. She speaks passionately about the inspiration she has found in the current Taiwanese president, Tsai Ing-wen, who is a big supporter of female empowerment, education, and LGBTQ rights. The combination of Vivi’s experiences and passions have led her to create an NGO called “BEGIN” (https://beginfromtaiwan.org/). This project has 3 branches to it and focuses both on education and girl empowerment.

The first branch, “The Dreamers”, is a project focused on impacting the mindset of young people in Taiwan. Through activities, workshops and speakers, it attempts to introduce less conventional ideas of the meaning of life and success, in order to motivate the youth to become dreamers. The second branch, “Women Vocalize”, is focused on girls and the performance arts. Vivi has translated the Vagina Monologues and adjusted it to be more appropriate to the local context, but still with the aim to bring women’s issues to the forefront. She aims to work through local high schools and get high school students to perform the various monologues for their peers and engage in discussion around these issues.

The third branch, “Live a World”, is a compilation of 3-minute videos from various UWC students from around the world. The aim is for students to share how they feel about their community or country and share how people back home feel in order to spread intercultural understanding even further outside of the UWC context. Vivi then aims to subtitle it in multiple languages so it also becomes a tool to learn English with, whilst also learning about various cultures around the world. For Vivi to bring these projects to life, she will be partnering with local Taiwanese universities, schools, homeschooling organizations and local governments. An inspiring journey lies ahead!

Vivi is now feeling ready to go out in the world and find new directions and ways forward.

She will always carry the UWC experience with her, taking the experience and making the chemical reaction with society

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