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Jasmine Wu in front of the Birdsnest stadium in Beijing

Consul General Yang Visits University of Minnesota

Yang Guoqiang (Jeffrey), the new Consul General of the Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in Chicago, visited the University of Minnesota in August 2010. Yang and four of his staff members met with China Center and Confucius Institute staff as well as Senior Vice President for System Academic Administration Robert Jones. This was the first visit to the University of Minnesota for Yang, who became the Consul General in May 2010 when his predecessor, Huang Ping, was promoted to overseeing the operation of Chinese consulates worldwide.

Because it is the base of the region’s diplomatic relations to China, the relationship with the Consulate General is extremely important to University. The Consulate General has been a strategic partner for the University in the past, including assisting with the establishment of the Confucius Institute, setting up academic exchanges, and designating a full academic-year scholarship to a Chinese university for a University of Minnesota student. The Consulate is also an important entity for students, scholars, and faculty travelling to or from China.

The University of Minnesota has one of the largest populations of Chinese students and scholars of any university in the U.S. Nearly a third of all international students at the University are from China. There are also a large number of students who travel from the University to China to study. One area of interest for Yang—and the largest topic of discussion in his meeting with Senior Vice President Jones—is reducing the “trade deficit” in education by increasing that number of students from the U.S. who travel to China for part or all of their studies. This is also a major goal of the China Center, who offers several scholarships for academic study and research in China to University of Minnesota students.

The visit to the University was part of a trip to greater Minnesota—one of the nine states in the consular district Yang oversees.  He was hosted on campus by China Center director Yongwei Zhang who had extended the invitation for a visit at Yang’s official reception in Chicago in June. Yang expressed a desire to visit the University and its leadership with regularity in order to develop the relationship and work on academic initiatives. Referencing the number of times his predecessor met with Senior Vice President Jones, Yang said with a warm smile, “I would like to meet with you more than two times.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

楊總領事訪問明尼蘇達大學

2010年8月,中華人民共和國駐芝加哥總領事館新任總領事楊國強 (Jeffrey) 訪問明尼蘇達大學。 楊總領事及其隨行的四名總領館成員會見了中國中心和孔子學院工作人員,以及明大主管學術管理系統的Robert Jones高級副校長。 這是楊總領事於2010年5月接替前總領事黃屏上任以來首次訪問明尼蘇達大學。 前總領事黃屏升任主管中國駐海外領事館事務。

明尼蘇達大學同總領事館的關係是決定中西部地區與中國外交關係的基礎,對明尼蘇達大學極其重要。總領事館是明尼蘇達大學長期以來的戰略合作夥伴,不僅支持創辦了孔子學院、創建學術交流項目,還為明大學生提供了在中國大學學習一年的全額獎學金。同時,總領事館也是協助明大學生、學者和教師去中國和中國學生學者來明大的重要機構。

明尼蘇達大學是全美擁有中國留學生和學者人數最多的大學之一。近三分之一的明大國際學生來自中國。同時,每年有大量明大學生前往中國學習。 楊總領事最為關注的問題之一是如何通過增加美國赴華留學生的比例來降低中美教育“貿易赤字”。這是他和Jones副校長會晤的主要議題,也是中國中心工作的主要目標之一。中國中心為明大學生提供多項赴華學習和學術研究獎學金

對明大的訪問是楊總領事此次訪問明尼蘇達地區的重要一站。明尼蘇達州也是芝加哥總領事館所轄的九個州之一。訪問團一行由中國中心主任張永維負責接待。今年6月,張主任在出席楊總領事的到任歡迎宴會上曾代表中心和學校領導邀請楊總領事訪問明大。 楊總領事表達了對明尼蘇達大學及校領導進行日後常規訪問的願望,以發展雙邊關係和開展學術項目。得知前總領事黃屏曾與Jones副校長曾會見過兩次後,楊總領事笑著說:“我希望能和你多見幾次。”