Monday October 6, 2014

American Culture in China

The U.S. Embassy in Beijing has awarded a grant to the University of Dayton China Institute in Suzhou Industrial Park to establish an American Cultural Center.

The $97,647 two-year grant award will fund learning projects by University of Dayton and Chinese students, a cultural immersion program for Chinese college and high school students, presentations on American culture and society, support for American students teaching English in Chinese schools and training programs to Chinese companies on corporate social responsibility, energy efficient manufacturing and environmental design. 

"We are honored to be selected by the U.S. State Department for this grant," said Weiping Wang, executive director of the institute. "A key mission for UDCI is to bring Chinese students and professionals together with Americans to explore aspects of American culture they might not otherwise experience. Through this grant, we will be able to broaden those experiences."

The University will partner with Soochow University in Suzhou on developing the programs and promoting American Cultural Center activities at UDCI to other Chinese universities and local communities. 

Through the American Cultural Center program, the State Department seeks to promote greater understanding of the United States among the Chinese public and Chinese youth. The program supports activities that bring a variety of Americans together with Chinese in order to better understand U.S. culture, society, government, language, law, economic system and values.

The University of Dayton opened UDCI in 2012 in the Suzhou Industrial Park, one of the fastest-growing innovation parks in the world. SIP made a multimillion-dollar investment in renovating a five-story, 68,000-square-foot building for classrooms, laboratories and project space for the institute, primarily because of the University's strong ties in China and its track record in product development through the School of Engineering's Innovation Center.

Since its inception, UDCI has grown to offer business, engineering, humanities and science courses to American, Chinese and international students. Students have opportunities to participate in corporate-sponsored research and development projects and internships. 

UDCI also offers professional training courses in communications, engineering, project and business management, technology and technical English to Chinese professionals in the industrial park and the Suzhou area. 

The University of Dayton will offer a semester-long program at UDCI starting in January to University of Dayton students and students from other universities.  Students may take up to 18 credit hours from 20 courses offered across the arts, business, engineering, humanities, natural sciences and social sciences. University of Dayton students may take advantage of the opportunity at no additional cost relative to a semester on campus. 

For more information about UDCI programs, visit the related link.

For media interviews, contact Cilla Shindell at pshindell1@udayton.edu

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