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Xian Jiaotong University City College Website Features News Story on Professor Umeda's Visit to the College


English translation of article:

On the invitation of the college, Professor Yasuko Umeda of Aichi University, Japan, began a visit with us here at Xian Jiaotong University City College on the morning of April 27th 2013. Professor Umeda conducted an amicable discussion with College Vice President, Professor Cui Duwu, in the college's guest lounge, exchanging opinions on a number of topics. Topics broached included the issue of how to strengthen cultural exchange links between Chinese and Japanese students, and also on the issue of cultivating global human resources. Professor Umeda and the Vice President were also joined in their talks by Chief Advisor to the Japanese Faculty (Department of Foreign Languages), Gu Mingyao, and Japanese language instructor, Kie Tsutsui. 

During their conference, Vice President Cui Duwu gave Professor Umeda a brief overview on Xian Jiaotong University City College and also went on to explain how the college had been working to develop its cultural exchange links with Japan. He also stressed how the college wholeheartedly supports its students in the Foreign Language Department in both studying and using a foreign language, and furthermore in carrying out cultural exchange with people of other cultures. The Vice President explained that he hoped Professor Umeda would offer the Japanese Faculty her guidance and assistance on issues relating to the curriculum and student development. 
Professor Umeda explained that Aichi University's Faculty of Modern Chinese Studies accepts approximately 200 students per year. The faculty prepares students for working on the international stage nurturing their multicultural understanding and competency in conveying Japanese culture. The faculty is in the process of actively expanding its exchange activities with a number of Chinese universities; our hope is that in the not so distant future, Xian Jiaotong University City College, too, can enter into a partnership with Aichi University. 
On the afternoon of the 27th, Professor Umeda gave a stimulating lecture to first and second year students in the Japanese Faculty, and also to a handful of students from other departments. Making use of her long-term experience in the field of teaching foreign students Japanese, she delivered a fascinating talk entitled "How Foreign Students View Japan". She described how Japan is seen through the eyes of non-Japanese students and touched upon the sort of issues students face when going abroad. Those students who are interested in studying in Japan used this opportunity to voice their concerns. Professor Umeda was more than willing to respond directly to these concerns and questions ran the gamut from what one ought to do when experiencing difficulties in interacting with Japanese people; to the differences in Chinese and Japanese culture and lifestyle; and to how best assimilate into a new environment. At the end of her talk, Chief Advisor to the Japanese Faculty, Gu Mingyao expressed his gratitude to Professor Umeda for visiting the college, and for kindly offering some pearls of wisdom on Japanese language education. He also used this opportunity to reiterate that students of a foreign language must strive to learn not only the language itself, but about the culture and society of the target country.
One of our very able Japanese language teachers, Kie Tsutsui, used to be one of Professor Umeda's students. In fact, Professor Umeda's recommendation helped her find a teaching post here in Xian. Miss Tsutsui's enthusiastic approach to work and lively teaching style has come to be highly regarded by both teachers and students alike. Professor Umeda was kind enough to set aside some time to observe one of Miss Tsutsui's classes and offer her some feedback. Professor Umeda also installed one of Aichi University's high-tech internet-based TV conference systems in the Foreign Languages Department, which will allow students of Xian Jiaotong University City College to participate remotely in periodic exchange activities with students at Aichi University. This will no doubt stimulate students' thirst for learning a foreign language, and we hope that such an exchange activity will serve as the basis for future exchange between our two universities.