(L-R) Local Director Joan Yee, Councilor Yang, FALE Dean Dr Akanisi Kedrayate and Chinese Director Professor Denggui Li during the celebration.
The Confucius Institute (CI) at The University of the South Pacific celebrated the 10th anniversary of the founding of the first Institute in the world on September 27.
This celebration was being held simultaneously worldwide in more than 120 countries.
“We also celebrate the birthday of China’s greatest teacher, Confucius, which is celebrated around this time (he is believed to have been born on 28 September 551 BC). We would also like to congratulate Hanban for the very successful CI programme which began in 2004,” Local Director Joan Yee said.
She said a pilot institute was established in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, in June 2004 and the first CI opened on 21 November 2004 in Seoul, South Korea.
“Those present here may be interested to know that as of December 2013, there are 440 CI and 646 Confucius Classrooms in 120 countries, with another 400 universities from 71 countries expressing their request to set up the CIs,” Yee said.
The Institute at USP was formally inaugurated on 6 September 2012, though classes in conversational Chinese began much earlier, in February 2012.
“We have developed very rapidly and now have teaching points at two of our campuses, (Lautoka and Emalus) and the response to the classes offered has been overwhelming,” she said.
According to her they also have been offering Social, Staff and Credit course classes in Chinese language and culture with other informal activities.
“The number of students and participants has increased by over 100% since 2012. Total participants in our courses and activities have totaled over 4000 and the interest continues. The establishment of the CI-USP has contributed to the improvement of understanding between the people of Fiji and China,” she said.
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