Friday, April 8, 2011 UCA’s Confucius Institute welcomed guests to its first Chinese Bridge Language Competition for high school and college students. Fourteen students from 5 different high schools participated in the first Chinese Bridge Language. The three areas of competition included Mandarin Chinese proficiency, general knowledge about China, and in a culturally relevant performance. Each participant explained and discussed their experience with learning Chinese language and culture before competing. Most of them chose to perform a talent.Paige Morphew from Hot Springs won first place for her Chinese puppet show. Two second place prizes were awarded respectively to Kara Caines of Conway, who did an umbrella dance, and Denisha Scott of Hot Springs, who displayed her skills at playing Chinese chess. Katelyn Sheets of Beebe, who sang a song, Christy Reed of Cross County, who also sang a song, and Garry Webb of Conway, who read a poem, all won third place positions. Honorable mentions include: Alexis Benson, Brooke Bond, and Isabel Sanchez of Harrisburg, who all did a sing and dance routine; Sarah Vitagliano of Hot Springs, who played an instrument and sang a song; and Brittany Bracket of Beebe and Madalyn Smith of Wynne, who both read poems.Each of the participants was very excited and grateful for the opportunity to showcase what they have learned of China and Mandarin. Each participant explained and discussed their experience with learning Chinese language and culture before competing. First place winner Paige Morphew and UCA student David Teaster will travel to Houston to compete in the Regional Bridge Competition. From there, they will have the chance to travel to the next level of Competition in China.