The 2018 Visiting Program for Young Sinologists (VPYS) kicked off in Beijing with an opening ceremony on Friday.
During the three-week program, 38 sinologists from 34 countries, including the US, Germany, France, South Korea and Botswana, will conduct research and study in several institutes in Beijing and visit China's Guizhou province to study local rural culture and development.
Hosted by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, the program has successfully taken place three times since 2014 and received very positive feedback. Five young sinologists shared their stories during the ceremony.
Zhu Qi, deputy director of the Foreign Affairs Bureau at China's Ministry of Culture and Tourism, speaks during the opening ceremony, July 6, 2018. [Photo provided to Chinaculture.org]
Zhu Qi, deputy director of the Foreign Affairs Bureau at China's Ministry of Culture and Tourism, stressed the significance of young talent in sinology. "I sincerely hope all participants will achieve academic success and also foster friendship among fellow scholars."
American participant David Solomon said his passion for understanding China began more than a decade ago. "It is a privilege to spend this month participating in VPYS — a unique opportunity to work with a diverse group of scholars and practitioners who are passionate and curious about China and its relationship to the rest of the world," he said.
Colombian professor David Castrillon is one of the 38 sinologists enrolled in this year's program in Beijing. [Photo provided to Chinaculture.org]
David Castrillon, an international relations professor and researcher from Colombia, said the program brought him in contact with eminent Chinese thinkers. "Furthermore, it will serve as an important step in my goal of making Colombia and Colombians see China and Chinese not only as partners but as true friends."
Sinologists and guests pose for a photo after the opening ceremony, on July 6, 2018. [Photo provided to Chinaculture.org]
This year's visiting program, taking place in six cities, will reach over 200 sinologists. After the lectures and field trip in China, participants may complete their theses on related fields within three months.