“Chinese Language Brings Together the World, Chinese Bridge Makes the World a Big Family”
—On-the-Spot Report of Qualification Round of the 18th "Chinese Bridge"-Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students in Belarus

[Source]    Education Section of the Chinese Embassy in Belarus [Time]    2019-05-22 17:17:12 
 

On May 11th, the Qualification Round of the 18th "Chinese Bridge"- Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students in Belarus, sponsored by the Confucius Institute Headquarters, organized by the Educational Section of the Chinese Embassy in Belarus and co-organized by the Confucius Institute at Minsk State Linguistic University, was held in Belarusian Minsk State Linguistic University. Over 400 people, including Luo Zhanhui, Charge d 'Affaires of the Chinese Embassy in Belarus, Li Wenhua, First Secretary of the Education Section of the Chinese Embassy in Belarus, Krasucki, Chief Commissioner of the Ministry of Education of Belarus, Natalya Baranova, President of Minsk State Linguistic University, Jelbin, Vice President of Minsk State Linguistic University, Anatoli Tozik, Belarusian Director of the Confucius Institute at Belarusian State University, the Chinese directors of the Confucius Institute (Classrooms) at Belarus, Chinese teachers, volunteer Chinese teachers, teachers and students from universities and colleges in Belarus, and 12 contestants and representatives of Chinese students studying in Belarus, attended the event.

At 1 pm, the Qualification Round of Belarusian Division of the 18th "Chinese Bridge"- Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students in 2019 kicked off with the solemn national anthems of China and Belarus.

Luo Zhanhui, Charge d 'Affaires of the Chinese Embassy in Belarus, noted in his address that he was honored to attend today's world-class event, and extended sincere greetings to all on behalf of Ambassador Cui Qiming. He also expressed heartfelt thanks to the Confucius Institute at Minsk State Linguistic University for its efforts in organizing the "Chinese Bridge" Competition. In addition, he said it was his fourth year to attend the “Chinese Bridge” Competition in Belarus. Over the past four years, the number of young Chinese learners in Belarus has increased, so did their language skills. He hoped that contestants of the competition would make the best use of their abilities and get a more comprehensive and in-depth understanding of China and Chinese language. He believed that, thanks to the “Chinese Bridge”, the cooperation between China and Belarus would be more stable and closer. Luo noted that China-Belarus relations have been developing rapidly in various fields in recent years. Two weeks ago, Belarusian President Lukashenko met with his Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the 2nd Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation. During the meeting, the two leaders expressed their appreciation about and support for further cooperation between China and Belarus. They believed that the bilateral cooperation in education would be more in-depth and comprehensive in the future and the hoped that college students from both sides would play a bigger role in promoting the bilateral cooperation. Finally, Luo expressed his sincere thanks to all the staff members who had been involved in the preparation of the competition for their efforts in promoting Chinese language and Chinese culture.

Krasucki, Chief Commissioner of the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Belarus, said in his address that it was a great honor for him to attend this grand event. He said that the Belarusian government had paid great attention and given much support to Chinese language education and the promotion of Chinese culture, and would set up a course for training native-born Chinese language teachers in Belarus this year, which showed the great interest of the Belarusian people in the ancient and beautiful Chinese language. Later this month, Chinese Vice-Minister of Education of China will pay a friendly visit to Belarus. He believed that in the future, more and more Chinese and Belarusian young people would contribute to the in-depth cooperation between the two sides.

Ms. Baranova, President of Minsk State Linguistic University, recalled the scene of the Belarusian selective trials of the “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students at Minsk State Linguistic University. She said that the first "Chinese Bridge" competition unprecedentedly attracted the attention of a large number of Belarusian young people and stirred their interest in Chinese language. She would, as always, support the promotion and development of Chinese language and culture in Belarus. She believed that learning Chinese is of great significance as it helps one understand the traditional culture of China and draw lessons from China’s rapid development. President Baranova appreciated the achievements made by students from Belarusian colleges in learning Chinese, and stressed that Chinese, an important bridge between the two countries, will certainly bring them into closer contact. She wished the contestants excellent results in the competition, greater success in China’s development, and everlasting friendship between the two peoples.

Tozik, Belarusian Director of the Confucius Institute at Belarusian State University, said that Chinese language is a bridge through which we have learned thousands of years of Chinese culture and history. Through this bridge, China and Belarus could do their best to cooperate actively in various fields, including culture, science and technology, economy, education and so on. Therefore, it was necessary to widen and strengthen this bridge as well as to help young people from China and Belarus understand each other's language and culture better so that they could make their due contributions to the cooperation between and development of the two countries.

The competition was divided into four sections: knowledge Q&A, prepared speech, impromptu speech and talent show.

In the knowledge Q&A session, there were various types of questions like choices, fill-in-the-blank, enumerating, judging, and matching questions. What’s more, the questions covered a wide range of knowledge, including Chinese culture, geography, history, general Chinese knowledge and so on, so as to comprehensively evaluate the contestants’ Chinese proficiency and understanding of the Chinese culture.

In the prepared speech session, the contestants started their own discussions under the theme of “One World, One Family”. Some of them took the Chinese Taoist thought as their starting point to discuss their understanding of “One World, One Family, and the world is a commonwealth”. Some discussed the significance of cross-cultural communication in building a community of shared future for mankind on the topic of The Era of the Global Village, calling on everyone to learn Chinese and become an envoy of cross-cultural communication. Some encouraged us carry out mutually beneficial cooperation and mutual help from the three levels of individuals, nations and countries, and expressed their aspiration for a peaceful world for all.

In the impromptu speech section, the contestants drew lots on the spot to decide the topics improvised. Although their preparation time is limited, their profound insights into the topics of the speech and their good performance won big rounds of applause from the judges and the audience.

In the talent show section, the contestants gave wonderful performances, such as singing, martial arts, crosstalk and instrumental playing. The song “Shallow” was soft and steady with melodious trebles. The actors in the sketch "False News" reported all kinds of news in a teasing and humorous way, which combined online buzzwords with serious news terms in idiomatic Chinese, created a lively atmosphere and left a deep impression on the judges and audience. Martial arts "Tai Chi Fan", poetry recitation "Beyond National Boundaries", "Qinyuchun • Snow", "Love Letter", crosstalk "Learn Mandarin", puppet show "Journey to the West", guitar playing "Dust in Fireworks" and so on enlivened the atmosphere. Students from the Department of Chinese Language and Culture of Minsk National Language and Culture University also staged dance performances such as "Chinese Fever", "Journey of Aspiration", "Ordinary Road" and "Don't Think of Me".

After four rounds of exciting and intense competition, Alexandra Chabang from the National University of Belarus and Lyubov Shustel from the National Language and Culture University of Minsk took the first and second places respectively.

Chen Weiwei, Press Counselor of the Chinese Embassy in Belarus, was also present at the competition. He said that with the support of President Xi Jinping and President Lukashenka, the cooperation and exchanges in education between China and Belarus have become increasingly close and fruitful in recent years, which would be impossible without the diligence and hard work of the leaders and staff of the governments and education departments of China and Belarus, as well as the active participation of the young people. He also congratulated on the successful selection of the 18th "Chinese Bridge" Chinese Competition for university students in Belarus, and wished the "Chinese Bridge" Competition in Belarus a greater success.

Jeer bin, Vice President of the Minsk State Linguistic University, said at the closing ceremony: “In spite of thousands of miles’ distance between the two countries, ‘Chinese Bridge’ makes the youth of the two countries closer, promoting exchanges and cooperation in many fields. And it is a great honor to provide a high-quality avenue for such a world-class Competition as Chinese Bridge. Today, we have gathered here the best experts in Chinese culture and literature as well as experts in Chinese language. They have made great contributions to Chinese language education and to the promotion of Chinese culture. I hope the contestants could tap their potential, make the best use of their abilities and deliver good performances.”

Lee Wenhua, First Secretary of the Education Section of the Chinese Embassy in Belarus, presented the award to Alexandra Chabon who won the first prize. Lee noted that the “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students has been held for 18 years now. During these years, the contestants presented us their language ability and talent on the stage. Through the competition, the goal of understanding Chinese language and culture has been achieved. Today's contestants are excellent. They’re all winners. I hope that more young Belarusian would get interested in Chinese, join the study of Chinese language, and understand Chinese culture. She said the Embassy would continue to support the development of Chinese language education in Belarus, and provide a wider stage for students to improve their abilities and language skills.

The Belarusian Qualification Round of the 18th “Chinese Bridge” has showed the students’ good understanding of Chinese language and helped them develop friendship. The youths from both countries will work together to build a bridge of language, a bridge of heart, and a bridge of cooperation, so that they can better exchange ideas and learn from each other, and contribute to turn the concept of “One world, one family” a reality.