With the summer holidays approaching, college students are busy applying for places to work in rural areas. Many universities encourage students to visit rural areas during the summer to enrich their knowledge and promote technology, education and culture in the countryside. Students mainly serve as voluntary teachers or carry out research into the rural economy and culture. Students make photo albums and videos and write reports about their efforts in rural areas. Wang Xiaowen, a Jinan University student, said a stint in the countryside was not only valuable academically but was also a good social experience. He called it 'the best of both worlds'. But some students note they do not have enough knowledge to make a contribution and sometimes cause trouble for the local people. 'I'm a Year Two college student studying medicine,' said Sun Yang, a Southern Medical University student. 'I often have to ask the local doctors for help when I treat the patients.' Most college students serve as voluntary teachers in the countryside to provide a better education for children. But some of the volunteers worry about making the children feel inferior or upset. 'We truly hope we can enrich their lives but, in reality, we can't change anything in just one or two weeks,' says Cheng Yingyi, a college student who served in Zhaoqing , Guangdong. 'We let them know about the ... outside world but their lives are still the same as before.' A village head in Chaozhou , Guangdong, who declined to be named, said he felt annoyed when receiving students' applications. 'Every year college students come here in the name of research and promise to do something to improve the local economy. But up to now I don't think they have done anything and I have to provide accommodation for them,' he said. 'Some villagers also do not like it because some students just come for fun.' Tan Jianguang, vice-chairman of the Guangdong Volunteer Association, said: 'College students often lack understanding of the rural areas ... [and as a result] they fail to make a contribution.'