January 16, 2012
Writer: Writer: Spencer Allen

Five students from Capital Normal University in Beijing, China, arrived at Brigham Young University-Idaho Saturday as part of a dual-school study abroad program.

This newly developed program, initiated last semester, enables BYU-Idaho students to study a semester in China and vice versa. BYU-Idaho students study the Chinese language and culture as well as serve in the community, and CNU students will spend their time pursuing their majors’ coursework, engaging in campus activities, and participating in the Chinese Cultural Association. This is the first semester CNU students will study at BYU-Idaho.

Senior Michael Allen attended CNU last semester along with 26 other BYU-Idaho students. “It’s a life changing experience. We did not change because we became more comfortable with the Chinese language, that was just the icing on the cake. This was a self-discovery phase where we were able to see where we fit into the world as individuals and as Americans. Doors were opened to me that would never have opened if I didn’t go to Beijing.”    

Dr. Scott Galer, chair of the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures, said the program is primarily intended to build cultural bridges and continually improve the relationship between the two universities.