Visit Beijing for a cultural exchange
by Laura MartzDaily Cougar Staff
Friday is the scholarship application deadline for students wishing to join the Asian American Studies Center's six-week summer study trip to China.
Students from all majors are eligible for the program, which will focus on language study and cultural exchange at Beijing's Central University for Nationalities.
After four hours a day of intensive Chinese language classes and lectures about Chinese history and society by local professors, the 20 chosen students will compare cultural notes with their Chinese counterparts, said UH education Professor Yali Zou, who will accompany them.
"We hope (the Americans) will try to speak Chinese," said Trang Phan, Zou's assistant and a master's student in education. "But students in China love to have opportunities to speak English."
Students will stay on campus and will be provided with three meals a day, said Zou, director of the center and a native of Beijing.
The group will also travel to temples, Tianenman Square, the Great Wall of China and historic sites in eight provinces, Phan said.
Students from Beijing will be invited to spend a few weeks at UH in the fall of 1996 as an exchange program. Because of its offer, UH was able to get students a special rate, Zou said.
UH students will pay $2,000, which covers tuition, housing, study materials and meals, but not airfare. Students from Oregon who are making the trip as well must pay $4,000.
Scholarship and study-abroad application forms and may be picked up at the Asian American Studies Center office in Room 450 Farish Hall between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.
Although the scholarship deadline is Friday, applications for the program itself will be accepted March 15 through April 5. Course credit may also be arranged.
"As we're approaching 2000, the market in Asian countries is opening, and cross-cultural business interactions are becoming more frequent," she said.
Asian-Americans are a substantial part of Houston's population, Phan said, so, "It's a real asset to become accustomed to that culture."