From the GoDekalb.com web-site:
Written by Editor
Wednesday, 19 March 2008
Emory University is partnering with Atlanta Public Schools and Nanjing University in China to establish the Confucius Institute in Atlanta, part of a fast-growing international network of cultural centers supported through grants from the government of the People's Republic of China to foster understanding of Chinese language and culture.
he Confucius Institute in Atlanta, which held its inauguration ceremony today, is not only the first Confucius Institute in the State of Georgia and the region, it is also the first and only one in the nation to be jointly administered by a private university and a public school system. "This is a special occasion for all of us who are committed to international education," said Emory President James Wagner. "Ultimately our aim is to enhance the understanding between the peoples of our different nations and cultures -- truly an exalted and noble goal."
Housed in Atlanta's Sammye E. Coan Middle School near the Emory campus, the Confucius Institute in Atlanta is "designed to be a gateway to Chinese language and culture for individuals, families, communities and schools in metro Atlanta and the surrounding area," says Rong Cai, associate professor of Chinese Studies and the inaugural director of the institute.
The Confucius Institute in Atlanta will help introduce K-12 instruction in Modern Standard Chinese throughout the state of Georgia and foster knowledge of Chinese language and culture in the greater metropolitan Atlanta area.
"In today's environment, where intellectual capital can be video conferenced, e-mailed, faxed or flown in, the school district's charge is to produce scholarly citizens of the world," says Atlanta Public Schools superintendent Beverly Hall. "The Atlanta Confucius Institute places us in a solid position to do so. The institute is a one-of-the-kind international project in the Southeast that will serve as a model for K-12 students, both within and outside Atlanta."
The institute also will:
â€¢ serve as a regional resource center for teacher-training and curriculum design;
â€¢ host a wide range of cultural and educational events open to the community;
â€¢ assist APS in developing Foreign Language Model Sites for K-12 Chinese instruction that can be replicated by schools statewide;
â€¢ offer classes in Chinese language and culture geared toward Atlanta's business community, teachers, parents and the public; and
â€¢ facilitate academic exchanges at all levels and in all disciplines between Emory and Nanjing University.
"Thanks to its special design, the Confucius Institute in Atlanta is poised to be a model not only for an unusual public-private partnership in education, but also for a new type of Confucius Institute that can be emulated by other schools," says Cai.
The Confucius Institute in Atlanta is funded with a renewable, three-year grant from the Chinese Language Council International (Hanban), which is affiliated with the Ministry of Education of China. It is the 41st such institute in the United States.
Emory's relationship with China dates to the 1850s. Students from China were among Emory's first international students, and Young John Allen, a member of the class of 1858, became one of the founders of modern Chinese journalism in Shanghai. Today Emory has a growing interdisciplinary program in Chinese studies, faculty who are engaged in numerous research initiatives, visiting faculty from China, and students who travel extensively throughout East Asia. President Wagner visited China in 2007 to launch a new joint project in medicine in Beijing and meet with Emory alumni there.
Coldwell Banker Triad