Students VHL go on a journey to China

In April 2017 eight Van Hall Larenstein students will be visiting the Garden Valley resort in Liyang in China. It will be the third visit of Van Hall Larenstein students to Liyang, where students will be working on a project together with students from Tianmu Lake Polytechnic and the Jiangsu Liyang Polytechnic from Liyang.

The Dutch and Chinese students will be working on an ecological project together, commissioned by Mr Zhong of leisure park Garden Valley Hotel and Resort. Nature, culture, design and marketing will be important features of this assignment. The students' Chinese adventure will start off in Beijing, and will take place between the 19th and 29th of April, 2017.

The selection

Students were informed about the trip through a video clip on the school's video portal, that explained what the project is all about. From the twenty-four applications from both Velp and Leeuwarden, twelve students were selected and invited for an interview. Subsequently, the following students were selected to participate in the project:

Students from the following study programmes in Liyang will be participating: Cooking (2), Hospitality (2), Elevators (2) and Computer Sciences (2).

Mixed teams

Two mixed teams made up out of four Chinese and four Dutch students will be working on Mr Zhong’s request regarding innovation. He wants the students to come up with new ideas for the ecological resort, and he wants a large bamboo wood with a hotel and luxurious treetop holiday houses to be developed. The students from different study programmes will be working on finding solutions together. They will learn from each other and inspire each other, especially since the group is so diverse. The project will take one week.

Ideas that have been developed during the project weeks in 2015 and 2016 include: a tree crown path, a petting zoo, a floating water purification system, air yoga, covered wagon trips, a house for new-borns, a mono rail, a forest fire alarm system, a picnic field, a house for lovers and an educational centre.


The students will start working on the project on the 24th of April, and the final presentation will take place on Friday. They will be spending the week in a five-star resort, all-inclusive, at expense of the client. Wendy Zuidema, managing director of Food & Dairy, and Han Zuidema, country coordinator for China at Van Hall Larenstein, will be visiting Liyang during the project week, to plan future arrangements with educational contacts in Liyang. Liyang is a twin town of Leeuwarden. Korrie Hoekstra, a tutor of Communication and Innovation, will supervise the student team during the trip.

Other activities

The team will be landing in Beijing on Thursday afternoon, the 20th of April. The following day the team will be visiting Dr Molly Chen, professor of Cost Effective Dairy Farming at Van Hall Larenstein, and eight of her students of the Agrarian University of Beijing. Before leaving for Liyang by train on Sunday the 23rd of April, the team will be visiting The Great Wall of China and the Forbidden Palace, among other things. Between the 23rd and 29th of April the team will be staying in Garden Valley, in Liyang. The return journey from Liyang will take the team to Shanghai first, for some sightseeing. Then it will be time to fly back home. Both the outward and the return flight will include a transfer in Doha. The team will land at Schiphol Airport on Sunday the 20th of April, at 13.20.

Read more about the project in 2016 >>

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