State Councilor Liu Yandong Presides over the Award Ceremony for Recipients of the Chinese Language Teaching Scholarship for Foreigners
Beijing, November, 10, 2009 –The Award Ceremony for recipients of the Chinese Language Teaching Scholarship for Foreigners was held at the Beijing Foreign Studies University. State Councilor Liu Yandong attended the ceremony. Liu Yandong emphasized the importance of increasing efforts on personnel training of Chinese language teaching; so as to meet increasing overseas demands for learning the language and to enhance mutual understanding and friendship between the Chinese and people from other countries.
Language is a tool for communication and a conduit for culture. Learning to use languages of various countries is conducive to exchanges between different cultures and civilizations, and to the harmonious co-existence of mankind, said Liu. The Chinese government has consistently advocated carrying out cross-cultural communication, stressing the importance of cultural exchange as a national strategy. The establishment of the Chinese Language Teaching Scholarship for Foreigners will offer help to foreign youngsters in learning Chinese.
"I hope that recipients can understand the real China and Chinese culture and contribute to the education of Teaching Chinese as foreign Language," Liu said.
Later, Minister Liu issued the scholarship certificate to one of the representatives. Hao Ping, Vice-Minister of Education presided over the ceremony. Yuan Guiren, Minister of Education declared the “Decision of Hanban on the Establishment of Recipients of the Chinese Language Teaching Scholarship for Foreigners”. In addition, some foreign envoys in China, representatives of domestic universities and students delivered speeches at the ceremony. A splendid performance was offered for the conclusion of the ceremony.
The scholarship, funded by the Chinese government, will be granted to each of the 1,000 strongest applicants, annually from 2009 to 2013. The Confucius Institute Headquarters (CIH) in Beijing, which specializes in promoting Chinese language, would offer teaching instructions on the master’s program.
Since its founding in June, 2009, students from over 50 countries and districts applied for the scholarship. In 2009, 1,021 students won the scholarship. With high Chinese language ability and rich resources of cultural knowledge, these winners will keep their promises and engage in Chinese teaching for at least five years after graduation.
Since its establishment in 2004, there are currently 282 Confucius Institutes and 241 Confucius Classrooms in 87 countries, with a total of 200,000 registered learners in 2009, involving 2,500,000 participants in total. At the same time, nearly 5,000 teachers and volunteers are dispatched each year to more than 100 countries. These undertakings are well praised by various governments and the general public.