John describes his travels and studies of the past year: “After completing a Chinese major at the College of William and Mary, including a summer and a semester studying abroad in Beijing, I was awarded the Chinese Government Scholarship. Through this scholarship, I was able to study Mandarin for two semesters at Sichuan University in Chengdu. Sichuan Province was very enjoyable — the spicy cuisine there is famous across China, and I even picked up a few phrases in the Sichuanese dialect. I was even able to find some excellent coaches in Wushu (Kung Fu), China’s national art.
I am currently enrolled in the Language Flagship program for Chinese, which aims to create working professionals in a target language. I spent the past summer in Qingdao participating in language training for this program, using Chinese to study Sino-American relations as viewed by mainland Chinese. For the next year I will be continuing my study of Chinese at Ohio State University, and plan to go back to China in order to research the process of urbanization in China the following year.”