February, 2010The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) celebrated the grand opening of its new Confucius Institute. The Institute, one of more than 300 located worldwide, will promote an awareness of Chinese culture, history and society in South Texas through Chinese language instruction and educational exchanges in partnership with Beijing, China-based University of International Business and Economics (UIBE).
“China is a global economic and political power,” said Don Lien, director of UTSA’s East Asia Institute and Confucius Institute. “By adopting an awareness of China’s culture, history, society and economy, we are equipping our students with the tools they need to establish strong and successful business partnerships once they graduate.”
The opening celebration for UTSA’s Confucius Institute will begin when a delegation from the UIBE, led by the Chair of its University Council, Wang Ling, meets senior officials at UTSA, including President Ricardo Romo, for a private ceremony at 11:15 a.m. Consul General Gao Yanping from the Chinese Consulate in Houston and State Representative James Chen will attend.
The grand opening celebration continues at 7:30 p.m. with a performance by the University of International Business & Economics’ Student Artist Troupe on UTSA’s Main Campus in the Arts Building Recital Hall (AB 2.03.02). The performance is free and open to the public.
Most of the funding for UTSA’s Confucius Institute will be provided by Confucius Institute Headquarters, located in Beijing. To date, the headquarters has given UTSA $150,000 for start-up costs and has pledged 3,000 Chinese books and videos. In addition, it will fund UIBE to send an associate director and two professors to UTSA to teach courses and help organize and direct programs and activities. Presently, UTSA offers Beginning and Intermediate Chinese to students.
UTSA’s new Confucius Institute is a component of its larger East Asia Institute, which promotes awareness of East Asian cultures and societies through education and enrichment opportunities.
The University of Texas at San Antonio is one of the fastest growing higher education institutions in Texas and the second largest of nine academic universities and six health institutions in the UT System. As a multicultural institution of access and excellence, UTSA aims to be a national research university providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.UTSA serves nearly 29,000 students in 64 bachelor’s, 48 master’s and 21 doctoral degree programs in the colleges of Architecture, Business, Education and Human Development, Engineering, Honors, Liberal and Fine Arts, Public Policy, Sciences and Graduate School. Founded in 1969, UTSA is an intellectual and creative resource center and a socioeconomic development catalyst for Texas and beyond. More information online at www.utsa.edu.