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Metro Brief: Howard University explores diversity with HBCU trip to Beijing

District of Columbia

On July 21, 2014
HBCU delegates in China

HBCU delegates met with officials in China
to solidify student exchange relations.
Credit: Wilson Global

Howard University and seven other HBCUs in the United States, last week, signed a memorandum of understanding with the China Education Association for International Exchange (CEAIE), China’s non-profit organization conducting international educational exchanges and cooperation on behalf of the Ministry of Education.

The agreement formally acknowledges the 1,000 scholarships for HBCU students announced by Vice Premier Liu Yandong at a November 2013 Capitol Hill meeting in Washington, D.C., between leadership of the Congressional Black Caucus and HBCU presidents from Howard University, Morgan State University, Tougaloo College and Xavier University of Louisiana.

“We are excited about the partnership between the Chinese Government and HBCUs,” said Wayne A.I. Frederick, interim president of Howard University. “The first Chinese students enrolled at Howard in 1870 and we have had an enduring relationship for nearly 150 years. We look forward to expanding our strategic partnership with China.”

Anthony Wutoh, assistant provost for international affairs, represented Howard as a member of the delegation. Members participated in the HBCUs-Chinese Universities Roundtable where they engaged in dialogue with their Chinese university counterparts about mutually agreed upon processes for implementing the scholarship award initiative.

“We’re delighted to be a part of this historic moment in progressive global student exchange and study,” said David Wilson, president of Morgan State University. “This collaboration between the Chinese government and HBCUs provides an excellent opportunity to enable our students to become competent in Chinese history and culture, and will significantly enhance their abilities to be successful global leaders throughout the world.”

The HBCU meetings in Beijing were held parallel to the 5th U.S.-China Consultation on People to People Exchange (CPE), which took place from July 9 - 11. The CPE is co-hosted by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and China’s Vice Premier Madam Liu Yandong, China’s highest-ranking government official overseeing education.

The CPE is designed to enhance and strengthen ties between the citizens of the United States and the People’s Republic of China in the areas of culture, education, science and technology, sports and women’s issues. On July 10, the HBCU delegation attended the closing session of the CPE meetings with Secretary Kerry and Vice Premier Liu.

The HBCU trip to China is the culmination of the collective works of the Chinese government and the China-U.S. Exchange Foundation (CUSEF), a Hong Kong-based nonprofit organization that encourages and facilitates exchanges among public policy makers, civic leaders, think tanks, academia and business organizations in the United States and China to enhance understanding and mutually beneficial relationships. CUSEF hosted and organized the first meeting of the HBCUs with Vice Premier Liu during the HBCUs’ first visit to China in September 2013.

The HBCU delegation’s visit from the U.S. side is managed and organized by Julia Wilson, CEO and founder of Wilson Global Communications, an international consultant to the HBCU pilot group, and the liaison representative for CUSEF. In China, the CEAIE is managing logistics on behalf of the Ministry of Education.

The HBCU–Chinese University Collaboration aims to encourage and increase international educational study opportunities for diverse students to study in China.

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