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訪問中國的感受

Cleveland State University College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences Visits China
Greg Sadlek, Dean, College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences
 

On a rainy November morning at Guangxi University in Nanning, China, just north of the border with Vietnam, two faculty colleagues and I walked into a convert hall behind our hosts. After we seated ourselves, we listened to a concert of traditional Chinese music, played on traditional Chinese instruments, some of which had been hand made by the Guangxi Music faculty. The students were dressed in colorful Chinese costumes, and the music they made was delicate and other worldly. The music stopped. The students readjusted themselves, and they suddenly burst forth in a lively rendition of John Philip Sousa’s “Stars and Stripes Forever” on those same traditional Chinese instruments! It was a moving and almost giddy moment for the three American guests of honor. Later that morning, my colleague, Grammy Award winning Angelin Chang, retuned the favor by laying classical piano pieces for our Chinese hosts and giving a maser class to some of their best music students. That morning, music built bridges that mere talk could not.
This was just one stop on a successful 11-day, five city tour that I took last November with my colleagues Dr.Qingshan Tan, a professor in our Department of Political Science and Dr. Chang. I had wanted for some time now to open our college up to China, and over the summer of 2013 the opportunities arrived…all at once. The purpose of this particular trip was to explore partnerships with three different Chinese institutions of higher education: Guangxi University, Jilin University (in Shenyang), and Northeast University (in Changchun), each of which had previously expressed interest in cooperating with CSU. (We also had encouraging discussions with the leadership of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music.) At each stop, we typically met with deans and faculty leaders in the areas of music, English, and political science. The food and the hospitality were unparalleled. The CSU delegation gave lectures or performances to eager student audiences. (Dr. Tan spoke on Sino-American relations, and I spoke about the state of the humanities in America.) A full range of partnership activities, including student exchanges, faculty exchanges, joint degree programs, and summer programs were considered. Moreover, several of the universities were interested in recruiting American students to come to China to teach English. As an earnest on future cooperation, we signed Memoranda of Understanding with each of the three universities.
A trip like this, wonderful as it was, is only the first step in the long process of building active and productive inter-university partnerships. International partnerships, like flower gardens, need constant tending. Last year we were fortunate to have a visiting scholar from Jilin University, Ronglan Zhu, in our Department of Modern Languages. Next year we will host another such scholar. These human connections are invaluable for making our ties concrete. In addition, over the spring semester I will be working with our colleagues in the College of Education and Human services to craft a 2+2+1 program in English and the Teaching of English as a Second Language specifically for Chinese students and looking for CSU graduates who might be interested in traveling to China to teach English. These efforts will, we hope, fully integrate CLASS into the larger CSU initiative of building ties to that giant, ancient, and emerging neighbor just across the Pacific.

 
 
   
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 
 
 

 

 

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