Confucius Institute Shares Chinese Culture with Community

  Chinese Bridge Competition

The Confucius Institute at Pace University (Pace CI) has been up to a lot recently, not least of which is engaging the local and downtown community in learning about and preserving the growth of the Chinese culture.

This fall the CI@Pace is offering its first “Gateway to Chinese” and “Chinese for Business” classes, hosting a special lecture by renowned Confucius scholar Professor Yu Dan on “Confucius from the Heart: Ancient Wisdom for Today’s World,” and sponsoring its first faculty development seminars to help train faculty to teach Chinese culture courses.

The institute recently sponsored several events held off-campus including a Chinese Cultural Festival on Oct. 15, which included a tree-planting ceremony; a special lecture entitled “Agree to Disagree: On Chinese and American Cultural Modes” by Professor Liu Mengxi on Oct. 21; a Chinese classic music performance by students from its partner institution, Nanjing Normal University on Oct. 21.

An art exhibition and lecture on Chinese ancient literature by Professor Fan from Nanjing University is planned for Nov 15.

In the spring, the Pace CI hosted the finals of the “Chinese BridgeGreater New York Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students, the Chinese Language Teachers Association of Greater New York Annual Conference, and the 8th New York International Conference on the Teaching of Chinese.

On May 19, 2010, Pace CI celebrated its second year by screening “Confucius,” a film about Confucios’ mysterious life. A panel of experts discussed both the film and scholarly work on the life of Confucius, led by Dr. Weihua Niu, Associate Professor of Psychology and Director of the CI@Pace. The panelists were Renqui Yu, Director of the Asian Studies Program at Purchase College SUNY, Ronald K. Frank and Joseph Lee, Co-Directors of the East Asian Studies Program at Pace University, and Bing Xu, Associate Professor at the Institute of Sociology of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing and a visiting scholar at Yale University.

On June 11, a Chinese Cultural Festival for the middle school students at the Chinatown YMCA at Middle School 131. The festival celebrated the Chinese holiday Duanwu. The Pace CI hosted the program, along with The Pace University Community and Volunteer Mobilization AmeriCorps program and The YMCA 21st Century Community Learning Center. The students learned about the history, cultures and customs of China. The children were also served traditional Chinese food, including dumplings and zongzi—and treated to a shadow puppet show, Tiger Tales.

Read more about all that is happening at the Confucius Institute at Pace University in its first newsletter, Live Confucian, and on its website.