Taitung City lies on the southeast coast of Taiwan facing the Pacific Ocean. It is home to the largest aboriginal population in Taiwan.
Due in part to its remote location and isolation by mountains from Taiwan's main population centers, Taitung was the last part of the island to be colonized by Han Chinese immigrants (late 19th century). Throughout the 20th century Taitung remained an economic backwater. Sparsely populated even today, this isolation may have been a blessing in disguise, as Taitung mostly escaped the urbanization and pollution that have come to plague much of the island's lowland areas, although within the past year Taitung has begun a rapid urbanization to make it more amenable to tourists from Taiwan’s urban centers and from Mainland China.
Traveling in Taitung is an encounter with green mountains and the blue sea, and an experience of savoring culture and nature. In Taitung, you may go on your own island getaway to Green Island or Orchid Island, bathe in the hot springs in Zhiben, take a stroll across the Sanxiantai Bridge or take in panoramic views from Luye Plateau—all these give you diverse views of Taitung. In Taitung you are bound to meet its natural beauty and hospitable people.
Taitung has a tropical climate with temperature averaging 25C and 75% humidity. During the dry season, beautiful fog can be seen rolling off the mountains.
Number of ETAs
10 - 15
Number of Schools with ETAs
15 - 20
Class sizes in Taitung vary from 10 to 30 students but most will be smaller class sizes. Taitung has a large aboriginal population and students will often have the opportunity to learn about their native heritage at their schools.
With rolling mountains and coastal breeze, Taitung is for the adventurous ETA. Many schools have mountains right in their backyard and Taitung is best known for it's lush environment. Be sure to check out the Hot Air Balloon festival in the summer!
Name: Vivi Li
Vivi Lin is a full-time graduate student at National Taitung University and a full-time nagging mother to the ETAs. She always knows what you're doing because Taitung is a really small town after all. Things that make her happy are: ETAs riding scooters slowly and carefully, ETAs riding even slower on rainy days, ETAs dressing warmly during winter (because you're riding a scooter in drizzling rain), ETAs being on time for everything, ETAs recycling their garbage correctly, ETAs getting along with each other, and ETAs working as a real team with their LET partners. Things that turn her into a nagging mother are the opposite of all of the above.
Vivi has been with Fulbright since 2014 when the scholarly exchange program began in Taitung. Prior to being a Fulbright coordinator she had spent several years working as a contract English teacher in elementary schools throughout Taitung, even some of the schools where the ETAs are currently stationed.
"Be a good time manager because your schedule could fill up fast."