Building Bridge to Promote Cultural Exchanges

[Source]    People’s Daily [Time]    2018-05-23 08:42:04 

A concert of Chinese national instruments was held at the music hall of University of Wrocław in Poland days ago. An influx of local students, citizens and children in traditional Chinese clothes came to enjoy the concert, and jointly celebrated the 10th anniversary of the founding of the Confucius Institute at the University of Wroclaw.

“In the past 10 years, the Confucius Institute has become a window for the citizens of Wrocław to know more about China, and has built a ‘Chinese bridge’ between the two peoples for mutual understanding and communication,” said Adam Jezierski, President of University of Wrocław. After giving a brief speech, he played the pipe organ with a history of hundreds of years himself to welcome the guests from the two countries.

Wrocław is a famous historic city in Poland. Many universities with great learning atmosphere gathered here. The University of Wrocław alone has cultivated nine Nobel laureates. In 2008, it cooperated with Xiamen University in establishing the Confucius Institute at the University of Wrocław. In the past 10 years, the number of students of the Confucius Institute has grown from 18 to more than 1,500, and 30 teaching sites have been set up. Its target students include children, students from primary and secondary schools, and adults of all ages. With the help of the Confucius Institute, the number of Chinese major students at the university has expanded to nearly 100. The University has become an important training base for talents proficient in Chinese of Poland.

“Our Confucius Institute is not only a language school but also an exhibition hall for Chinese culture,” said Jan Burdukiewicz, Vice Rector of the University of Wrocław and Board Chairman of the Confucius Institute. From “The Silk Road Ceramic Arts” theme exhibition to lectures and voluntary clinics promoting Traditional Chinese Medicine in Poland; from the “China Day” held each year to regular assistance for local companies to communicate with Chinese employees, the Confucius Institute has added more Chinese elements and Chinese colors to the culturally vibrant Wrocław.

In the past 10 years, Wrocław has held a series of activities featuring Chinese cultural characteristics, promoting waves of “Chinese craze” and “Chinese style”. The city’s Da Vinci Primary School is the only primary school in Poland to take Mandarin as a formal course, and the local municipal government has held dragon boat racing for eight years in a row. In 2017 and 2018, the Institute has successively held the “Panda Cup” Chinese Knowledge Contest for Elementary School Students and the "Great Wall Cup" Chinese Knowledge Contest for College Students. It has become a local brand, attracting a huge amount of Chinese culture enthusiasts.

The Confucius Institute at the University of Wrocław also received a special birthday gift on the occasion of its 10th birthday. Its headquarters has moved into a building with more than one hundred years of history in order to better adapt to the development of the Confucius Institute. “The Confucius Institute at the University of Wrocław has been enjoying great popularity among the local people for 10 years. It benefits from the rapid and healthy development of the relations between Poland and China and the advancement of the ‘Belt and Road’ initiative. The Confucius Institute will be more closely integrated with local needs to design activities and build a bridge to promote cultural exchanges,” said Gosciwit Malinowski, Polish Director of the Confucius Institute at the University of Wrocław, at the opening ceremony of the new headquarters.

(Story by Yu Yang, People’s Daily, Page 3, May 17th, 2018)

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