July 31, 2018
The Center in Beijing maintained its full slate of summer activities during the month of July, with students and faculty continuing to take advantage of the Center's resources for summer research projects, and a number of University of Chicago affiliates hosting events and workshops at the Center.
The undergraduate researchers have all settled in to their life in Beijing, and their many projects appear to be progressing quite well. Five more undergraduates and one recent graduate (AB ‘18) arrived in July, for a total of 12 undergraduate researchers. In addition to our Admissions Ambassador and Political Science research assistants, we now have three students conducting psychology research at the Center (and attempting to recruit 400 and 200 participants, respectively, for each of the two studies— help them by signing up here or here!). The aforementioned research programs typically send students to the Center every spring, and this year we had a number of undergraduates come to Beijing to pursue independent projects, with one student conducting pre-BA thesis research on Beijing's public parks, one student assisting with curatorial work at the Red Gate Gallery in Beijing, and one student conducting research on Chinese medicine. Meanwhile, a number of graduate student researchers from the departments of history, East Asian Languages and Civilizations, sociology, anthropology, and psychology, along with the continuation of the Summer Language program, created a bustling atmosphere of student life at the Center.
Many of these students were able to take advantage of the opportunity to attend the July 12 opening of the Center's newest art exhibition, “Unexpected Histories: A New Exhibition of Works by Guan Wei.” Judith Farquhar, Max Palevsky Professor of Anthropology Emerita and Faculty Director of the University of Chicago Center in Beijing, curated the exhibition, which is described in greater detail here. The opening itself drew a crowd of over 50 artists, students, and friends of the University.
Just a few weeks later, from July 18 to 20, the Center hosted the Eighth Chinese Political Sociology Workshop. Professor Dingxin Zhao of the University of Chicago Department of Sociology and Professor Shizheng Feng of Renmin University Department of Sociology organized the workshop, with additional assistance from Zhejiang University. Within the three-day span, over 130 outstanding graduate students and young faculty selected from over 500 applicants had the opportunity to listen to lectures and participate in discussions with 17 faculty members from around the world. This year's workshop centered around the topic of globalization; in particular, the expanding Eurasian and global encounters of different peoples throughout history and its economic, cultural, political and demographic impact. More detailed information is available here.
Almost as soon as the workshop ended, the Alumni Club of Beijing held another “Dialogue with a Distinguished Alum” (杰出校友面对面) at the Center on July 21. The event, part of a monthly series, drew a crowd of over 60 alums and other friends of the University who came to hear Chen Liguang (MBA ‘00) discuss his work experience with Xue Peng, CEO of Shansong Delivery Service, and others in attendance. The Booth Alumni Club also brought an event to the Beijing Center in July, with an independently-organized film screening at the Center taking place on July 28.
To finish off the month, the Center opened the second-to-last day of July with a group of visitors from Chicago when 13 teachers and staff from the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools came to the Center to learn about our activities. They were in Beijing as part of a one-week trip to China, in which they met with local teachers and educational policy makers to learn about how China is working to meet the educational needs of its vast and diverse population. During their visit to the Center, they discussed China's education system and relevant governmental bodies with Yuan Ji, deputy director of the Center in Beijing.
In addition to the aforementioned events, the Center continued to host visitors, including delegations from Korea University Business School, Nakhon Phanom University (Thailand), and Northwestern University; as well as many prospective undergraduate students and their parents. Moving into August and further into the academic year, the Center staff looks forward to facilitating more opportunities for academic exchange and dialogue, in its various forms.