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Southern Utah University to open cultural center in China

Published: Tuesday, Sept. 25 2012 3:05 p.m. MDT

CEDAR CITY — Southern Utah University has been selected by the U.S. Department of State as one of 10 U.S. higher education institutions to receive a grant to establish an American Cultural Center in China.

The center will be a joint venture between SUU and Hunan Normal University and will be housed on the Hunan Normal campus in Changsha, SUU officials announced Tuesday.

The purpose of the center will be to foster an understanding of American culture, history, values, policies and institutions in students, faculty and local community members.

"It's so important to inform the younger generation of Chinese, especially college students, about American culture, the U.S. political system and democratic institutions," said SUU music professor Xun Sun. "The center will create a path toward more discussion and less conflict between the U.S. and China."

Beginning in March 2013, the American Cultural Center of Changsha will offer weekly activities such as lectures, service projects, book clubs, film screenings and English language tutoring sessions on a designated theme each month. The center also will sponsor events such as an annual conference, U.S. holiday celebrations and provide resources and instruction by SUU professors and students in both live meetings and online.

The U.S. Department of State award is part of a group of grants through which the U.S. Mission to China seeks to build a network of programs that promote greater understanding of the United States among the Chinese public and youth.

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