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Chinese language education lays solid foundation for future U.S.-China relations

Ecns.cn – Xinhua

“Encouraging more American students to study Chinese and study abroad in China will ensure Sino-American relationship grows and flourishes in the future, U.S. educators have said. “The goal is to strengthen the overall U.S.-China relationship by ensuring very strong people-to-people ties,” said Travis Tanner, vice president of 100,000-Strong Initiative Foundation, a non-profit U.S.organization that leads the Chinese language education initiative called “1 Million Strong.”…”The U.S.-China relationship is the most important bilateral relationship of the 21st century,” Josette Sheeran, President and CEO of the Asia Society, said on Thursday. “Now is China’s moment in the world to emerge, and the language is key to understand not only China’s today, but also China’s history, and the way it thinks.””(more)

Becoming a global citizen is just as important as getting a degree

The Daily Evergreen – BOGDAN (THEO) MYNKA

“We often talk about how getting a college education is one of the most important steps to becoming a responsible citizen and making a valuable contribution to society and future generations. But is that all it takes? Is taking the minimum required classes for a degree in your field enough to make one ready for the real world, or is there a problem – across the entire country perhaps – that involves our education system being too self-centered and isolated from the rest of the world? I think so…A recent survey conducted by the University of Hawaii noted that “40 percent of companies surveyed missed international business opportunities because of a lack of internationally competent personnel.”…Patriotism is still important – understanding the values of this nation is one of the most valuable qualities we can possess – but putting that patriotism into a global perspective and understanding the problems and cultures of the rest of the world is just as important and that should be part of our responsibility as college students.”(more)

Why More Americans Should Study Abroad

The Huffington Post – Taylor Dibbert

“I recently read an excellent essay by Sanford J. Ungar. Published in Foreign Affairs, the piece explains why it’s so important for Americans to study abroad. “The trouble is that relatively few Americans currently enjoy this kind of life-changing overseas experience,” writes Ungar. He cites many reasons for this, including inflexible curriculum requirements at American institutions of higher learning and the extra costs that could come with such an endeavor. Another significant problem is “the lack of curricular and socioeconomic diversity among those who do go overseas.” (The majority of students who study abroad are white and come from elite backgrounds.) Ungar notes that there have been some steps in the right direction. However, “efforts to increase the number of Americans studying abroad have been piecemeal and only partially successful.”.”(more)

Amal Clooney Is Helping Lebanese Girls Get An Education

The Huffington Post – Willa Frej

“International human rights lawyer Amal Clooney wants to increase educational opportunities for fellow Lebanese women. She has partnered with 100 Lives, an organization seeking to educate people on the Armenian genocide, to annually award a scholarship at the United World College in Dilijan, Armenia. Winners will enroll in a two-year international baccalaureate program…”This scholarship will give young women from Lebanon the opportunity of a lifetime,” Clooney said in a statement. “Cross-cultural learning and studying abroad can be transformative.””(more)

The Importance of an International Education for All Students

U.S. Dept. of Education – Mohamed Abdel-Kader

“This week is International Education Week — a time when educators, administrators, students, and parents recognize and celebrate the importance of world language learning; study abroad; and an appreciation of different countries and cultures…For students who study a different part of the world, speak a second language, or study abroad, the experience can lead to a better appreciation of the complexity, challenges, and ambiguity, as well as the opportunities, of life in the 21st century. These skills and aptitudes contribute to our young people’s global competency…As important as global competencies are to building a robust educational experience for our students and increasing the cultural understanding of our people, they also are critical tools for individuals navigating a global job market. The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that one in five American jobs is tied to global trade; and that number is expected to rise significantly in coming years. As we work to ensure that all students have access to a high-quality education, it is imperative that the experience they have, whether it is during their K-12 years, at a community college, or at a four-year university, gives them the skills to succeed in our increasingly connected, 21st century global economy.”(more)

Extreme Study Abroad: The World Is Their Campus

The New York Times – Claire Cain Miller

“As educators question what college should look like in the 21st century, one answer is: global. And to higher education trailblazers, that means more than junior year abroad or overseas internships…Consider one emerging approach, wherein students hop from campus to campus across continents, earning an undergraduate degree in the process…Minerva, which is affiliated with the Keck Graduate Institute, was founded by a former tech executive, Ben Nelson, who believed that traditional colleges were not adequately preparing students for the real world…while majors are offered in the usual fields, like humanities, science and business, the overarching goal is to teach students to think critically and creatively and to communicate and interact well with others.”(more)