Today we’d like to introduce you to Jennifer Zhang.
Jennifer, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
In 2004, a group of parents in Winchester, Massachusetts decided to organize a Chinese school for children of every background. Our vision was to create a school that students looked forward to attending every week; one where they could learn practical communication skills and develop a life-long appreciation for the language and traditional culture of China.
After one summer preparation, we began our weekend heritage school in September 2004 with less than 50 students. Now as of September 2017, we have nearly 500 students enrolled on weekend program and over 100 students enrolled at the after school program during the week. Winchester School of Chinese Culture has become a major and respectful organization in the town of Winchester contributing to many areas of the community services.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
It has been hard. We are no experts of running a school. Everything we do is all new to us when we started. We need to find a facility, hire teachers, do budget, promote and school and get students; find the right text book, etc. We are all volunteers at the school, and all had full-time jobs and families to take care. It was a lot of work and a big commitment to start the school.
Later, our school grows to a big size. And we also created the after school program due to parents demand; we felt we could not manage it on an all-volunteer base anymore. One of the original founders ended up leaving her professional job and works for the school for full-time with a lot less pay. Without the sacrifice and commitment we made to the community, our school will not exist or grow to the size of today.
So, as you know, we’re impressed with Winchester School of Chinese Culture – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
Our school is a Chinese heritage school. We have a systematic weekend program and associated after school program. Other Chinese schools in the area only has weekend program. Our after school program give the students an immersion environment so they can learn Chinese much more effectively. Our students are also top performers in their regular schools as well.
I am one of the original founders of the school and was the principal for 5 years. During my term as the principal, I created the after school program and managing the weekend program at the same time. I have done all the work for the school on a volunteer base. Our school has become the big family for Chinese and non-Chinese residents in Winchester and 50 other towns. Hundreds of families bring their children to learn Chinese language and culture and enrichment classes every Sunday. For the residents in Winchester, our after school program is a huge child-care help for working parents. Our school has also became a key player in community service of the town of Winchester.
So, what’s next? Any big plans?
We will continue to serve the community like we have been always doing for the past 13 years. Any things the community needed or wanted, we will do our best to meet the demand. We are committed to grow with our community.
- $380 per year for Chinese class (very affordable)
- Address: Jennifer Zhang
3 Windemere Dr
Andover, MA 01810
- Website: www.wscc-ma.org
- Phone: 6179092497
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org