Students wow with China stories

By Zhang Ruinan in New York | China Daily USA | Updated: 2017-11-13 11:07

Students wow with China stories

Zhang Qiyue (second from right), consul general of China in New York; Dawood Farahi, president of Kean University in New Jersey (right); Xu Yongji (left), education consul at the Consulate General in New York; and Vassar College President Elizabeth Howe Bradley attend a reception for educators and students on Friday at the Consulate General. Zhang Ruinan / China Daily

The first-hand experiences of American students who have studied in China highlighted an educational event at the Chinese Consulate General in New York.

"Going to China was always a dream of mine; I didn't have many impressions of China before I went there. But after I went there, I found I loved the country a lot, especially the history, the culture and arts," said William Harrison, a senior at Kean University in New Jersey, who studied in Wenzhou for one semester last year.

More than 300 university presidents, provosts, Confucius Institute directors, educators from the College Board and American students who have studied or hope to study in China attended a reception hosted by Consul General Zhang Qiyue on Friday.

"Regarding the area of education (among the achievements and consensus reached on Thursday between President Xi Jinping and visiting US President Donald Trump), the two sides (China and the US) agreed to further boost university exchanges and cooperation, and render great support for student exchanges and also to promote the visits of young people to each other's country," Zhang said.

"In this regard, the Chinese government has already announced that it will provide 10,000 scholarships for short-term study with credits for American students they will have some study experience in China for the next four years," she said.

Dawood Farahi, president of Kean University and the founder of Wenzhou-Kean University, said: "We have 2,000 students already in Wenzhou, China. And we graduated our first students in 2015; 70 percent of them are going to the best universities in this land."

Established in 2014 by Wenzhou University in Zhejiang province and Kean University, the joint venture is a newcomer among the seven Western-style schools operating in China.

Harrison, the Kean University student, said he had studied Chinese for four years but was still surprised when he got to China. Seeing all the different imperial palaces in China that he had studied in history class in the US enhanced his understanding of Chinese culture and arts.

Joseph Ruiz, who studied in China in 2009 through a program at Brooklyn College in the City University of New York, was equally impressed.

"It's one of the most magnificent experiences in my life, I really didn't know what to expect when I went down there, and when I arrived it was just breathtaking - a number of technologies around me, the buildings and the food are just so amazing," Ruiz said.

"What I took away the most was the people; they were so wonderful, very friendly, and tried to help me, which made me feel at home."

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