Text by Yangjing Ou and photos by Dongte Ji
At the beginning of the 2016 Lunar New Year, CIUA hosted a colorful event at the University of Arizona’s Centennial Hall 12 noon to 2 pm on January 31st in order to introduce CIUA’s Chinese language courses for the spring semester as well as traditional Chinese culture. Consul Haiying Chai from the Chinese Consulate General in Los Angeles attended the event in person. UA Vice President of Global Initiatives Mike Proctor, CIUA Co-Director Zhao Chen and Chinese Director Wei Zhao also visited the display venue and spoke warmly with those present.
In order to take this opportunity to introduce Chinese language courses as well as traditional Chinese culture, CIUA prepared 2000 fliers and contact information cards which were printed in advance. A long display table was divided into four sections including those for Chinese medicine and health, traditional Chinese culture, Chinese painting & calligraphy and a Chinese teaching textbook section. For decoration, red lanterns and students’ paintings from Confucius Institute Classrooms attracted the attention and appreciation of many. A large number of CIUA volunteers helped distribute fliers and questionnaires to introduce the Chinese language courses.
At the Chinese medicine and health table, many attendees indicated great interest in acupuncture points and tried to find the points in their own ears, one by one. One gentleman told his own story of having recovered from a disabling condition by the skillful application of Chinese medicine. He pointed to his shoulder and said, “Chinese medicine is amazing!” He was very excited to learn that CIUA will offer a new class about Chinese medicine and healthy lifestyles.
Many American children from CIUA classrooms enjoyed toy replicas of traditional Chinese weapons and many parents expressed great interest in CIUA’s new course offerings on Taichi fist, Taichi sword and Chinese kongfu, encouraging them to look carefully for suitable textbooks for their kids. CIUA’s Chinese teachers took this opportunity to introduce new courses for the spring semester including Business Chinese, Tourism Chinese, Sinology for Children, and HSK preparation. Many parents wanted their kids to try the first offering of Sinology for Children. The Chinese painting section was very crowded. CIUA’s painting instructor sent “FU” (luck, fortune) to everyone and gave a detailed explanation of the character, “FU”. Volunteers also helped introduce the Chinese painting class.
The Chinese New Year Festival attracted about 2000 audience members. It was very wise for CIUA to have taken this opportunity to introduce Chinese language courses and traditional Chinese culture. CIUA will stay in touch with everyone by means of contact information gathered through the questionnaire distributed describing Chinese language courses.