On August 5th, 2013, the Confucius Institute at the University of Central Arkansas (UCACI) held a Welcome- luncheon for new Hanban Chinese teachers at President Dining Room at the University of Central Arkansas (UCA).
Mr. Tom Courtway, President of UCA, Dr. Maurice Lee, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts, Ms. Barbara Culpepper, Dr. Frank Servedio, and Ms. Ann Crosser from Arkansas Department Education (ADE), Dr. Phillip Bailey, Chair of World Languages and Culture, Ms. Ashley Pettingill and Ms. Lisa Shoemake from International Engagement , superintendents, principals and mentors from school districts were invited at the luncheon.
At the luncheon, President Tom Courtway gave an opening speech. He said that UCACI did a great job in enriching the foreign languages programs at UCA and in Arkansas. He welcomed the new Chinese teachers to Arkansas. Dr. Zhuang, Director of UCACI expressed his thanks to UCA, ADE and school districts for supporting the Chinese Program; meanwhile, he gave a brief introduction of the development of UCACI and Teach Chinese in Arkansas Program to all attendees. He expressed his hope to open more Chinese programs in the rest of the school districts in Arkansas. Ms. Barbara Culpepper from ADE stated that she was very glad to see that Teach Chinese in Arkansas Program has developed very well with the dedication of ADE and UCACI. She appreciated what UCACI has done for enhancing the Chinese Language proficiency of the people in Arkansas in the past few years, and said it was very meaningful for Arkansas’s Education. Ms. Kimberly Rowan, chaperone for this summer’s Summer Camp for American High School Students in China introduced her wonderful experience in the Summer Camp this July and Ms. Laura Rymel shared with others her unforgettable experience as a member of the Arkansas Educator Group China Tour. Both of the programs were sponsored by Confucius Institute Headquarters and organized by UCACI.
After the Welcome luncheon, the six new Hanban Chinese teachers were taken to their school districts for further orientation of their new teaching career in Arkansas. They will begin their Chinese classes in the mid-August.