Ceremony awes KSU

tmollett@mdjonline.com KENNESAW - Kennesaw State University celebrated the official opening of its…

Georgia (Aug 19, 2009)tmollett@mdjonline.com

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KENNESAW - Kennesaw State University celebrated the official opening of its Confucius Institute on Monday night with traditional Chinese performances, including a Chinese Lion Dance, Erhu and Guzheng instrumental music and a martial arts demonstration.

Kennesaw State University is the second university in Georgia to receive a Confucius Institute. The institute, which is funded in large part by the Chinese government, is intended to further the study of Chinese language and culture in the U.S.

"Awareness of other cultures - particularly the dynamic and increasingly prominent Chinese culture - is a tremendous asset for our citizens to possess," KSU President Dr. Dan Papp said. "We are pleased to be the conduit for enhancing awareness of China's expanding international role in our global society. This Institute will allow KSU to strengthen our position as a leader in global education."

Ken Jin, director of the Confucius Institute, said the grand opening was the culmination of more than one year's efforts to get the Institute at KSU.

"After more than a year of planning and negotiations, our Confucius Institute is ready to launch an exciting series of programs and activities about China that will enlighten our students and community and deepen our understanding on the country's rich culture," he said.

The Confucius Institute at KSU will operate under an agreement between the university and Yangzhou University in China's Jiangsu Province, as well as the Chinese Language Council International, a division of the Chinese Ministry of Education, according to university officials.

KSU's program will have both academic and professional development programs, including courses, workshops and seminars on Chinese language, healing and martial arts, painting, calligraphy, cooking, economics, social development and business.

KSU's partner school, Yangzhou University, will provide some of the teachers for the Confucius Institute. The Institute will also work with existing departments, programs and faculty at KSU, which includes 37 faculty members of Chinese origin, according to KSU officials.

Plan are also underway to launch a new partnership between the state and Confucius Institute at KSU to teach the Chinese language to 4-year-olds at kindergartens around the state, said Holly Robinson, commissioner of Bright from the Start: the Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning.

The Chinese government gave the university about $100,000 to start the Confucius Institute, which the university matched in dollar amount through in-kind contributions and donations, said Dr. Barry Morris, executive director of the Institute of Global Initiatives at KSU.

Morris said the Institute's operating budget would be determined on an annual basis.

Delegates from the People's Republic of China Consulate General in Houston and the Chairman of the Board of Regents at Yangzhou University in China also attended the event.


 

A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers more than 150 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its approximately 41,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia and the third-largest university in the state. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the region and from 92 countries across the globe. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status, and one of the 50 largest public institutions in the country. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu

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