The Confucius Institute

at UMass Boston


Chinese Bridge Speech Contests

The Confucius Institute at University of Massachusetts Boston hosts the well recognized and highly-competitive "Chinese Bridge" Speech Contests on campus each year. (Please watch the video clips of the finalists from 2014 by clicking the YouTube icon on the right side of the screen) 

March 19th, 2016  The 11th "Chinese Bridge" Speech Contest for US High School Students from 1:30 p.m.–5:30 p.m. Free and open to the public. Join us. Please find details here.


April 16, 2016  The 6th "Chinese Bridge" Speech Contest for University Students in New England from 8:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m. Free and open to the public. Join us. Please find details here (in Chinese and in English).Application Form in ChineseApplication Form in English)

(Application Form in Chinese, Application Form in English)

Do you want to win a FREE round-trip flight ticket to Beijing, China? Come and join us! ◆ Our sincere thanks to Hainan Airlines' generous and continuing support of our Chinese Bridge Speech Contests!

Do you want to go to China to the "Chinese Bridge" Chinese Proficiency Competition to compete with students from other countries? Come and join us! Hanban/Confucius Institute Headquarters will cover your international airfare and all the expenses in China. ◆ Our sincere thanks to Hanban/Confucius Institute Headquarters’ generous and continuing support of our Chinese Bridge Speech Contests!

(For more details, please click Chinese Bridge Speech Contest on the left hand side)



Introducing a new series of presentations about Chinese Culture

(Choose a topic from the list below and we will send our experts to teach your students in your classroom setting. Tell us what time and date work for you and we will make all the arrangements. )

1. Boston’s Chinatown

This presentation will provide a historical overview of Boston’s Chinatown which will help your students get a fuller picture of the Chinese immigrants from southeastern China to the United States during the 19th and 20th centuries. Learn about the numerous contribution Chinese Americans made that influenced trade, industry, education, politics, and culture in New England.

Presenter: Shixian Sheng is now a facilitator at OLLI, (Osher Lifelong Learning Institute) UMass Boston, teaching a course on Stories behind the Changes of Fashion in China. Since 2007, she has taught courses (co-sponsored by Confucius Institute) on a wide range of topics related to China and Chinese culture at OLLI. Having worked in Chinatown for almost two decades, Shixian Sheng is familiar not only with the community, and also with Boston Chinatown’s history. Shixian Sheng taught college-level American Literature before she came to the United States in 1995. She researched women writers, as a visiting scholar at BU and Harvard. Introduction of the Grand Canal, the longest canal or artificial river in the world. The Grand Canal is the first internal communication route from South to North, which transformed China from a region into a nation with a common language, and a global route to agriculture, trade, and industry. 

Time: 40-60 minutes

Price: $200


2. Grand Canal of China

Introduction of the Grand Canal, the longest canal or artificial river in the world. The Grand Canal is the first internal communication route from South to North, which transformed China from a region into a nation with a common language, and a global route to agriculture, trade, and industry.

Presenter: Kathleen Lusk Brooke received her PhD from Harvard, taught at MIT, and author of Building the World which explores 3,000 years of history through the greatest achievements from China’s Grand Canal to the Big Dig/Central Artery Project of Boston.

Time: Based upon your needs and audience

Price: $200


3. Great Wall of China:

This presentation will provide a historical overview of the Great Wall of China to help develop a fuller picture of the famous landmark’s importance.

Presenter: Kathleen Lusk Brooke (see above for details). 

Time: Based upon your needs and audience.

Price: $200

4. Chinese Teachers’ Coaching/Mentoring Program 

This professional development program is designed to help Chinese teachers to make their classroom teaching more effective.  The program can be school district based, schools based, small group of teachers based with specific questions/issues from programs and classrooms. Our presenter will help you rethink your teaching approaches and program development strategies, to help you to gain the personal and professional growth as a Chinese teacher.

Presenter: Jian Gao has been actively involved in education for over 30 years as a classroom teacher, teacher trainer, consultant, and author.  She has built one of the most successful Chinese programs in the nation at Belmont Hill School, where students won numerous top prizes at the international and national “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for High school Students held annually in America and in China.  Many of her students place out of the foreign language requirement at their universities, such as Harvard, Yale, Tufts, Colby College, Georgetown just to name a few.  Teachers and administrators come from all over the nation to observe her teaching, and walked away feeling inspired, excited, energized, and most of all, with a vision for creating a learning environment where teachers love to teach and students love to learn.  A dynamic presenter at professional conferences, Jian Gao is frequently invited to share her systematically developed materials and her innovative and effective teaching methods – all proven successful in her own teaching.

Time: Based upon your needs and audience


Cultural Exchange

To deepen cultural awareness between the U.S. and China, the University of Massachusetts Confucius Institute offers students, teachers and community members many opportunities for cultural exchange: 

“The Confucius Institute has enriched the university’s growing connection with China. Our collaboration has contributed significantly to our understanding of the Chinese culture.”

Kathleen Teehan
Founding Director, University of Massachusetts Confucius Institute at UMass Boston


Teacher Training Programs

To meet the growing demand for licensed teachers of Chinese, The Confucius Institute and the UMass Boston China Program Center offer an annual teacher training program. More than 130 local Mandarin language teachers gathered on the UMass Boston campus to participate in the Twentieth Annual New England Chinese Language Teacher Network Fall Conference.

The conference focuses on the best practices in teaching Mandarin, American cultural awareness training, and professional development workshops for teachers of Chinese.

China Program Center

In addition to teacher training conferences, the China Program Center at the University of Massachusetts Boston provides entrepreneurs, political leaders, and academics with the knowledge of how to do business in China and specific tools needed to build successful American-Chinese joint ventures. The center offers programs for American and Chinese audiences plus trade missions, government exchanges, and joint academic ventures.


Leadership Conferences

More than 40 principals and administrators from local Chinese heritage schools gathered at UMass Boston for The First Greater Boston Area Weekend Chinese School Conference.

Heritage schools have historically provided Chinese immigrant children with Chinese language and culture instruction on weekends. In one Massachusetts heritage school, attendance has grown from 35 students to 500 students in the past several years. Over the past two decades, non-Asian Americans are also embracing the study of Chinese in growing numbers.


Study Abroad Programs and Cultural Exchanges

Three College of Advancing and Professional Studies Credit Courses that Include Travel to China

The Confucius Institute in Boston awards scholarships to study abroad in China each summer. Course participants receive unparalleled access to Chinese leaders in business and education during visits to Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Inner Mongolia, in some cases.

The scholarships cover all expenses incurred in China including hotel, food, and transportation and are paid for by Hanban, the executive body of the Confucius Institute headquartered in Beijing. These tours of China bring students, educators, and key business people together to deepen cultural awareness through direct experience and immersion.

1. Entrepreneurship in the U.S. and China

For six consecutive summers, 20-35 College of Management MBA students have participated in this summer course. UMass Boston Professor Raymond Liu taught this course for the past three years.

2. China Today: Culture, History, and Society

For three consecutive years, UMass Boston Professor Weili Ye and faculty members for various Chinese universities have taken students to China for two weeks including visits to the Great Wall and the Forbidden City.

3. Educational Change in China and the United States

This comparative study tour is the newest in the series of summer seminars offered by University College. UMass Boston Professors Wenfan Yan and Jack Leonard compare the educational systems and educational reforms in China and the U.S.

Non Credit Courses

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at UMass Boston, a membership-abased community of mature adults, offers many non-credit courses. "Learn Modern Chinese History through Documentary Movies" is a popular course taught by Wanli Hu, director of the China Program Center at UMass Boston.