GoAbroad Interview

Danielle Hasty - China Program Mentor & Trainer

Danielle Hasty - China Program Mentor & Trainer

Danielle Hasty currently lives in Hangzhou, China. During her free time she enjoys traveling, exploring, meeting new people, and having new experiences. She has been living in China since April 2013 and is so grateful for everything the country has taught her.

You’re from the U.S, how did you get connected with LoPair Education in China?

I moved to China two years ago to teach English in Hangzhou. A few months after I arrived, I was referred by a friend to interview for the Au Pair Trainer position at LoPair Education.

Making dumplings during Lantern Festival in China

Learning to make dumplings during Lantern Festival 2014

What exactly does your role as Au Pair Trainer entail? How do you go about preparing new au pairs for their experience in China?

My main role as an Au Pair Trainer is to make sure that the new au pairs arriving to China receive as much information as possible about what to expect in the upcoming weeks and months. I do this by providing them information about basic survival in China, and I try to paint them a picture with some of my personal experiences. I am also responsible for training the au pairs in a TESOL course so that they can become more comfortable with how to approach teaching their host children. Finally, I am available as an au pair mentor. This means that I am available to the au pairs throughout their stay in China to help with any questions they may have.

You’ve lived in Hangzhou, China for a couple of years, what is the most important thing prospective au pairs should know about the culture of Chinese families?

Chinese families put a lot of time and effort into making sure that their children receive the best education possible. Educationally, China is very competitive and children work very hard to earn the best scores possible. Chinese families are looking for someone who can help give their child a leg up and provide them with the opportunity to live with a native English speaker. The au pairs will not only be looking after the children, but they will teaching them English as well.

World Financial Building in Shanghai, China

Visiting the World Financial Building in Shanghai

What sets LoPair Education’s programs apart from other au pair providers?

The personalized attention that LoPair Education provides for our au pairs is unmatched by any other au pair provider. The LoPair staff are dedicated to being available to our au pairs around the clock and always put their needs first. We provide our au pairs with a foreign mentor who can relate to their everyday struggles and can be there to lend a helping hand or simply to listen.

Your academic background is in Family and Child Sciences, how do you use this knowledge and these skills in your role as Au Pair Mentor and Trainer?

My degree has helped me to understand children and has allowed me to gain many one-on-one experiences with children. I was able to gain knowledge not only in caring and educating children, but also in family relationships. I use this knowledge from my past experiences to teach our au pairs how to handle many different situations. I explain to them my successes and failures in hopes that they can learn from these when they arrive with their host families.

You’ve been a LoPair mentor for over a year, what is the best piece of advice for incoming au pairs?

Keeping an open mind and allowing yourself to be flexible are what I find to be the most important things when moving to China. This is an amazing country and if you allow it, you can gain so many wonderful experiences and knowledge here. Sometimes things don’t happen how you expect them to, but that doesn’t mean that your experience will be anything less than amazing!

Au pairs studying for TESOL certification in China

Helping new au pairs during their TESOL training session

What’s the most commonly asked question you receive, and how do you respond?

The question that I am most commonly asked is why I decided to move to China. Everyone has different reasons for coming here, and for me it was that I wanted a chance to experience more of what the world has to offer. I knew very little about Chinese culture before I made my move to Hangzhou in 2013. It is now two years later, and I feel like this is the best decision I have ever made. Living here has allowed me to learn so many new things and to make lifelong friendships with people from all over the world.

What is your biggest goal as Au Pair Mentor and Trainer for the next year?

My biggest goal as Au Pair Mentor and Trainer over the next year is to provide our au pairs with the best experience they could possibly have. I want each and every one of our au pairs to be a success story. I want everyone to return home feeling the same about about China as I do.

What is your favorite part about working for Lo Pair Education?

Working at LoPair has provided me with so many wonderful things. First, the LoPair staff is amazing and has been overwhelmingly welcoming since day one. Also, I have the opportunity to meet new au pairs from all over the world every month. I love to hear their stories and find out why they decided to make the move to China. Lastly, I have gained so much knowledge from the experience that LoPair has given me. They have introduced me to the au pair world and I want to thank them so much for that!

Volunteer teacher with Chinese student at a Halloween party

Helping students make Frankenstein cups at a Halloween party