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University of Kentucky Education Abroad & Confucius Institute Gives Students the Opportunity to Travel to China

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Being able to apply what is learned in the classroom in a real-world setting is one of the most valuable experiences that a student will have during their college career. The University of Kentucky Confucius Institute and Education Abroad encourages students to engage in applying their education on a global scale, by offering students the opportunity to travel to China on four different trips, including a new trip during spring break, which will host its first group of students this upcoming March.

The four trips include Education in Chinese Culture, Chinese Conversation, Young Leaders Understanding China for Gaines Center fellows and the new trip, Media and Culture in China. Each trip gives students a unique and different educational experience, including face-to-face interactions with professionals from U.S Media Outlets such as the New York Times, CNN and Wall Street Journal, to learn about reporting China to American audiences.

Student engagement and understanding of Chinese business and media culture is essential to helping lay out a strong foundation for a successful professional career, and to know the relationship between the United States and China. “The Sino-American relationship is perhaps the most strategically important relationship of the 21st century. UKCI and Education Abroad are doing its best to enhance that relationship through generous opportunities it provides highly-motivated UK Students,” said Philip Harling, interim director of UK Honors College and director of Gaines Center. He also co-led one of the trips to China last summer.

Each trip values the engaging professionals currently in the field with students, so they can best learn how to practice in their chosen field from a global perspective, and continue to grow as a student. Those who have traveled on past trips described the experience as eye opening and it has left lasting impact on their educational efforts and life. “This is truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I am so grateful to have visited our largest Eastern neighbor,” Kaylee Hicks said. Hicks traveled to China through the Young Leaders trip last summer. “China is shockingly different from home, but I am already thrilled to know another corner of the world to be a little more in tune with what the rest of the planet experiences,” Hicks said.

Hicks is just one of the countless students who has personally been impacted by attending a trip to China, and many more will get this kind of experience in the upcoming trips. Education Abroad has seen an increase in student interest in these trips, as last year only 12 students were in the program, and this year the number of students has grown to 20. The new trip offered during spring break has 12 students planning to travel to Beijing this March.

The Confucius Institute and Education Abroad supports trips to China in order to encourage student engagement and an enlarged outlook of our Eastern Neighbor. Each trip targets different interest and offers learning experiences for all students. “If you are serious about learning the Chinese Language in addition to experiencing its culture and history, these are your programs,” said Liang Luo Ph.D. and associate professor of Chinese studies.

For more information on each trip visit, Media and Culture in China, Education in Chinese Culture, and Chinese Conversation.

If you’re interested in these trips, contact seanjmcclure@uky.edu.

A gateway for Chinese language, culture and art to the people of Kentucky, UKCI provides leadership, support and coordination for Chinese language and programs in K-12 schools as well as on UK's campus; assists and facilitates establishing and maintain faculty and student exchanges between UK colleges and Chinese universities; conducts Chinese language and cultural exchange; and promotes education about China on campus, across the Bluegrass region and throughout the Commonwealth.