Confucius Institute (CI)
Confucius Institute at UCC Held Its 15th-Anniversary Celebration in Cork City Hall
On the evening of October 21, 2022, the 15th-anniversary celebration of the Confucius Institute at UCC was held in Cork City Hall. Leaders and guests from Cork City Council, Cork County Council, the Chinese Embassy in Ireland, sister Confucius Institutes, and friends from all walks of life in Ireland attended the milestone event, which was witnessed by a total of more than eight hundred people.
The evening was hosted by Ms Lee Wah Pay, Head of Enterprise, Economic Development Enterprise and Tourism, Cork County Council, who delivered the guest speech.
Councillor John Sheehan, on behalf of the Lord Mayor of Cork, gave a welcome speech for the evening. He warmly welcomed all the guests to the 15th-anniversary celebration of the Confucius Institute in Cork and hoped that the Confucius Institute at UCC would play a better role as a bridge to enhance the friendship between Ireland and China, especially the friendship and cooperation between Cork and Shanghai, and to promote mutual understanding and communication between the people of Ireland and China.
On behalf of Ambassador He Xiangdong, Ms Song Ruoyun from the Education Section of the Chinese Embassy in Ireland sent her best wishes to the Confucius Institute for its 15th anniversary. We hope that in the future, the Confucius Institutes in Ireland will continue to work together and make greater contributions to promoting Sino-Irish cultural exchanges and enhancing Sino-Irish friendship.
Councillor Deirdre O'Brien, Deputy County Mayor of Cork, said in her speech that she was pleased to witness the deepening relationship and close cooperation between Cork County and Confucius Institute at UCC along the way. UCC CI’s well-established Chinese language program and its rich and varied Chinese cultural activities have Been of great benefit to the development of the Irish humanities and have made the Confucius Institute at UCC an integral part of the Cork region.
Ouyang Hua, Vice President of Shanghai University, said that the Confucius Institute at UCC has given full play to its role as a bridge in the past 15 years, organizing annual study visits to China for Irish students and principals of primary and secondary schools, deepening exchanges between Shanghai University and University College Cork, and making positive contributions to promoting the internationalization of Shanghai University.
Professor Kiri Paramore, Director of the Institute of Asian Studies at the University College Cork and Director of the Confucius Institute at UCC delivered a speech on behalf of the President of UCC, John O'Halloran, to express his best wishes for the 15th anniversary of the Confucius Institute.
Mr Zhao Lingshan, Vice President and Secretary General of the China International Chinese Education Foundation, delivered a speech via video. He said that over the past 15 years, the Confucius Institute at Cork University has achieved remarkable results and good social benefits, and has twice been awarded the title of "Global Advanced Confucius Institute", which fully demonstrates the professional standard of the work of the Confucius Institute. The Confucius Institute has been working closely with local universities to develop Chinese language teaching and has played an active role in the formal inclusion of Chinese as a foreign language subject in the Irish Leaving Cert system.
Finally, Director Huang Junyi summarized the achievements of UCC CI in the past fifteen years, namely, Shanghai University has selected 267 Chinese teachers who have taught in 102 schools and universities, teaching 43,000 primary and secondary school students and 2,452 university students. 820 secondary school students went to China through the Confucius Institute summer camp program, and nearly 100 primary and secondary school principals went to Shanghai through the Confucius Institute's "Principal's Mission" program. Nearly 100 principals of primary and secondary schools went to Shanghai through the Confucius Institute's "Principal Tour" program, and 137 students were recommended to study in China on scholarships from the Confucius Institute of the State Hanban. More than 400 cultural feasts such as Spring Festival Gala, National Day Parade and Cultural Night were carried out with Cork City, Cork County, universities, schools and local associations, which enriched the multiculturalism of Cork region and were welcomed by the people in and around Cork City, and expressed heartfelt thanks to the Irish establishments, friends from all walks of life, sister Confucius Institutes and colleges of Shanghai University for their support, attention and congratulations. Finally, Director Huang announced the official start of the celebration party.
The performance of the party was divided into four chapters: "Memory of Love Island", "Best of the Past", "Set Sail" and "A Brighter Tomorrow". "Performers from China, Ireland, Mexico, India and other parts of the world gathered on the stage and presented a wonderful performance to the audience. Teachers of CI and students from UCC performed the famous Irish piece "Riverdance" with traditional instruments from China and Ireland. Guzheng and Yangqin performances, orchestral ensemble and chorus, dances from various countries full of exotic flavours, Chinese martial arts, tai chi and other wonderful programs won the applause of the audience on stage. The presentation of this celebration party profoundly demonstrated the harmonious scene of beauty and unity in the world and showed the beauty of multiculturalism.