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Tuesday, 31 July 2012

The University of Pittsburgh at Bradford will host two scholars from the Confucius Institute during the 2012-13 academic year who will teach Chinese language and culture to Pitt-Bradford students.

The scholars, Professors Yidan Huang and Liulin Zhang, will also present seminars and noncredit courses to members of the community.

“We’re thrilled to have these talented and resourceful scholars join our faculty for the next year,” said Dr. Livingston Alexander, president of the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford.

“I’m confident that our students and our friends in the community will take advantage of this unique resource. More and more businesses in our region are expanding operations into China, and I suspect that they too may find it beneficial to become familiar with the language and customs of China.”

Both women are graduate students in the College of Chinese Language and Literature at Wuhan University in Wuhan, China. Wuhan is a partner with the University of Pittsburgh in sponsoring the Confucius Institute at Pitt. All Confucius Institutes are also co-sponsored by the Chinese National Office for Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language to promote Chinese language and culture at universities throughout the world.

Huang and Zhang arrive at Pitt-Bradford this week and will live in a house on campus during their stay.

Huang teaches Chinese as a second language at Wuhan University and holds a bachelor’s degree in teaching Chinese as a second language from Central China Normal University. She has an extensive background in Chinese calligraphy, for which she has won several prizes. Her other interests include martial arts, opera, paper cutting, traditional Chinese painting and mahjong. Zhang earned her bachelor’s degree in teaching Chinese as a foreign language from Wuhan and is pursuing a master’s degree in the same area. Her areas of study include linguistics, literature, psychology, English translation, Western culture, logic, science of religion and international business.

Zhang is an athlete who played center on her college basketball team and spiker on Wuhan’s volleyball team. Other interests are singing, aerobics, cucurbit (a Chinese classical instrument), Tai Chi Chuan, Mulan boxing, calligraphy and making dumplings.

During the Fall semester, they will teach Chinese Language and Culture. During the Spring semester, they will teach Chinese language courses.

“This is another example of our expanding international initiatives and provides greater educational opportunities in Chinese language and culture for our students and the community,” said Dr. Steven Hardin, vice president and dean of academic affairs.

In addition to teaching credit courses, the Confucius Institute Scholars will work with the university’s Division of Continuing Education and Regional Development to offer noncredit Mandarin language and culture courses for the community.

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