Harvard University moves Chinese summer program from Beijing to Taipei

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Harvard University will move its Chinese-language summer program from Beijing to Taipei next year, as it is transformed from Harvard Beijing Academy hosted by Beijing Language and Culture University, to Harvard Taipei Academy under the umbrella of National Taiwan University.

“The planned relocation of this program from Beijing to Taiwan has been in consideration for some time and reflects a wide range of operational factors,” Associate Director of Communications Harry Pierre told HKFP on Wednesday in an email statement.

National Taiwan University Library. Photo: Wikicommons.

“The new program location presents a different opportunity for our instructors and learners to broaden their educational experiences. We look forward to continuing to build what has become a great program for students. “

The new eight-week program will promote learning of Mandarin as well as cultural activities in Taiwan.

Program director Jennifer Liu previously had Recount university newspaper Harvard Crimson that this decision was made because of a “perceived lack of friendliness on the part of the host institution”, citing accommodation difficulties and a ban on celebrating the US National Day on July 4.

A person, accompanied by two children, walks past the installation of the Taiwanese flag ahead of the National Day celebrations in Taipei, Taiwan on October 6, 2021. Photo: Walid Berrazeg / HKFP.

Another staff member, William Kirby of the Harvard Center in Shanghai, told the student newspaper that the decision was made for purely logistical reasons amid the Covid-19 pandemic, and that the university is committed to deepen its ties with Beijing.

The move comes amid growing tensions between Beijing and Washington over the Chinese Communist Party’s human rights record in Xinjiang and Hong Kong, and the origins of the Covid-19 pandemic.


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