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Come to China with me today…without the twenty-hour flight! Though this seems impossible, spending your summer at Wofford College can get you there! Last summer, Wofford was awarded a grant for STARTALK @ Wofford, a program dedicated to increasing “the number of Americans learning, speaking, and teaching critical need foreign languages.” Based on the success of the 2013 and 2014 programs, Wofford applied and has been awarded again. So if you are visiting Wofford this summer, expect to take a trip to China for the day as the language and culture of China overwhelm and inspire you.

The summer of 2013 was an exceptional kickoff to STARTALK @ Wofford and the summer of 2014 followed suit. During each experience, nearly forty 8th through 12th grade students from Spartanburg, Greenville, and nearby counties were enveloped with both the language and culture of China.

“We hope to continue growing each year!”, said Dr. Yongfang Zhang, the Program Director. Wofford will offer a two-week intensive program with eight additional online modules throughout the rest of the summer. Additionally, we will offer continued learning opportunities through online or onsite tutoring in the fall of 2015 to cement the knowledge gained during the summer program. In doing this, STARTALK @ Wofford hopes to extend the learning process so that learning will continue and last.

During the on-campus portion, students will be enrolled in intensive language classes in the morning with afternoon cultural experiences and tutorial hours. Tutorial hours will provide the students with a chance to ask any questions regarding their morning language class as well as additional practice with their new language skills.

This year, Wofford intends to continue serving the communities of Spartanburg, Greenville, and other nearby counties by offering the program free of charge. Transportation will be provided to and from Greenville. STARTALK @ Wofford hopes to give students access to language and culture that they might not find at their home school. Wofford also hopes to encourage students to continue with their Chinese studies so they would become global citizens with cross-cultural competence who are prepared to succeed in the 21st Century, a desire that coincides with Wofford’s own mission.

While STARTALK @ Wofford is free, students must be passionate, motivated and have demonstrated academic excellence. As we will only be accepting 45 current 6th to graduating 12th graders, priority is given to students who plan to continue the study of Chinese and who can commit to taking advantage of all of the opportunities offered by our program.