2010 Hangzhou Brochure

Valparaiso University Hangzhou Study Program

Lutheran Colleges' China Consortium


FALL SEMESTER (August – December)

Why participate in the Hangzhou Program?
  • Study language and culture in a beautiful Chinese city
  • Expose yourself to one of the oldest civilizations and the fastest growing economy in the world
  • Gain international experience
  • Earn up to 16 credits toward graduation

The deadline for applying to the 2001 Hangzhou Study Program is March 31, 2010    

In this brochure, you will find information on:  Basic features of the Hangzhou Study Program

  • The Resident Director
  • Costs and living conditions
  • Language and other academic studies
  • Extracurricular activities
  • Health care, communication, and opportunities for professional development
  • How to apply
Introduction to the Hangzhou Program

The Hangzhou Study Program: Valparaiso University and members of the Lutheran Colleges' China Consortium invite students of all majors to join the Hangzhou Study Program in the coming fall semester. The Program is designed to provide students with a unique opportunity to learn the Chinese language and culture in the Hangzhou area under the guidance of the resident director, chosen from the faculty of one of the Lutheran colleges. No previous Chinese language study is necessary to participate in the program.

4The Location: The city of Hangzhou is a former dynastic capital located in the eastern province of Zhejiang about 2 hours by train from Shanghai. Its reputation as an attractive tourist destination has been immortalized by the Chinese proverb: "Above there is heaven; below there is Suzhou and Hangzhou." Hangzhou has a population of over one million people, making it an ideal place for international students--the city is large enough to provide all features of Chinese culture and yet small enough to allow easy access to the local community and attractions.

Hangzhou is also a leader in the recent reform in China. The combination of rich tradition with modern life makes the city a perfect place for student with any major, from liberal arts to sciences to business management, to make interesting discoveries and broaden their perspectives.

5Local Host: Our local host is Zhejiang University, one of the largest and most comprehensive universities in the country since the 1998 merger of four institutions: Zhejiang University, Hangzhou University (which previously hosted our program), Zhejiang Agricultural University and Zhejiang Medical University.  Zhejiang University is a well-respected institution that has nearly 34,000 students on its five campuses and offers 97 different undergraduate programs as well as 204 graduate programs.  The Yuquan Campus, where our students stay, is about 15 minutes away by bicycle from the city center and its main attraction, the beautiful West Lake. Instructors from Zhejiang University will guide students through intensive language training and share with them their insights about the local culture.

Resident Director

Unlike many other international programs, the Hangzhou Study Program features a resident director who is a faculty member of one of the Lutheran colleges. The director's responsibility is to provide an atmosphere which will enable students to have the best possible study-abroad experience. The resident director also teaches a course on Chinese culture and civilization and another one in his/her area of expertise. 

6CARTER HANSON will serve as resident director for Valparaiso University's Study Abroad Center at Hangzhou, China, during the fall semester 2010.  Carter Hanson is an Associate Professor in the Department of English.  He has taught at VU since 1999.  He received his B.A. from Luther College and his Ph.D. from the University of Iowa.  At VU he teaches courses on Utopian/Dystopian literature, Adolescent literature, Canadian fiction, and the English novel.  Prof. Hanson served as the Resident Director of VU’s study abroad program in Cambridge, England, from 2005-2007.  He is the author of the book Emigration, Nation, Vocation: The Literature of English Emigration to Canada, 1825-1900.  During his appointment in Hangzhou, he will offer English 200 (Literary Studies) as well as Chinese Culture and Civilization.  Professor Hanson will be joined by his wife and two daughters.

Email: carter.hanson@valpo.edu 

Costs and Living ConditionsTuition for the Hangzhou Study Program is determined by each participating college. For the exact amount, please contact the China Program/faculty adviser or the Office of International Studies at your college or university. In addition, there is a $1200.00 study center fee, which is used for the group tours inside China. Students are responsible for international airfare, health insurance, and incidental expenses. A round trip plane ticket between Chicago and Shanghai normally costs about $1,000. Since living costs are generally lower in China by US standards, students are advised to bring about $1,200 to $1,500 to cover incidental costs and their own trips to parts of

7At Zhejiang University, our students live in a special dormitory with international students from all over the world. The rooms, in a newly renovated section of the dormitory, are air-conditioned and have private bathrooms. Students can eat their meals at either campus cafeterias or the restaurant-style dining rooms or nearby eating establishments. They may also prepare their own food in the dorm kitchen.

Students will have access to the university library, computers (including Internet), and sports facilities. Local entertainment such as operas, movies, museums, and art exhibits are easily available.The local community is diverse. Local residents are generally friendly toward foreign students although language barriers may limit interactions. On campus, however, opportunities of interaction with Chinese faculty and students are more readily available. 

Language and other Academic Studies

Participants of the Hangzhou Study Program are required to take the Chinese Culture and Civilization course, plus 10 credits of intensive Chinese language.  (Five Chinese language credits may be audited, rather than taken for credit, as long as the student maintains a full course load otherwise.)  Zhejiang University offers Chinese language courses at six different levels; students who have no prior exposure to the Chinese language can take the introductory classes, while those with some background in Chinese are encouraged to enroll in a more advanced class, after taking a placement exam.  Language courses are taught three and half-hours a day, Monday through Friday.

Students can also take the optional, 3-credit courses taught by the resident director, or may arrange an independent study in their area of interest.

The courses offered in fall 2001 are:

EAST 109 (5 cr.) Intensive Elementary Chinese               

EAST 110 (5 cr.) Intensive Elementary Chinese: Conversation  

EAST 209 (5 cr.) Intensive Intermediate Chinese          

EAST 210 (5 cr.) Intensive Intermediate Chinese: Conversation 

EAST 395 (3 cr.) Chinese Culture and Civilization

ENGL 200 (3 cr.) Literary Studies

The Chinese Culture and Civilization class will be taught by Dr. Hanson. Course work will include both reading and experiential learning. There are no prerequisites for this course. For VU students, this course fulfills the social analysis/cultural diversity requirement.

Students interested in doing an independent study in their own fields should consult with their academic advisers. They may also contact Dr. Zhimin Lin of Valparaiso University, who served as the director from 1994 to 1996, about the types of opportunities available for an independent study prior to the departure date. In addition, Zhejiang University offers a few non-credit courses for international students. These courses include Chinese calligraphy and tai chi. Individually tutored courses are also available, such as foreign languages (other than Chinese and English), martial arts, modern Chinese history, etc.

Extracurricular Activities

10Group activities. During the semester, the students will visit such cities as Shanghai, Nanjing, Beijing and Xi'an.

Individualized travel. In addition to group activities, there are also a variety of opportunities available for individualized travel. Students are encouraged to travel on their own to various parts of China. These trips include short, weekend visits to places near Hangzhou and a longer, one-week trip to a place of the student's choice at the middle of the semester. There are also many cultural sites in the city of Hangzhou, which the students can visit by bicycle.  Students will also have a variety of opportunities to interact with local people. Each student is assigned one or several language partners, normally a Chinese student enrolled at Zhejiang University. Students, if interested, can participate in various campus activities such as sports and music programs. They can visit homes of local residents and celebrate local holidays with Chinese friends. There are several churches in the city of Hangzhou that are open to foreigners.In addition, students will have chance to meet and interact with international students from other countries. The foreign student dormitory at Zhejiang University hosts over 100 international students. Living in this environment is in itself a rather rewarding experience.Students are frequently asked to participate in locally sponsored activities or programs. Former students have participated in shooting of movies and campus radio programs, among many other activities.

Health Care, Communication, And Professional Development

Health care facilities are generally adequate in the Hangzhou area. For minor health problems, a university clinic can provide basic treatment. For more serious health problems, there are several local hospitals equipped with advanced medical facilities. Students can best protect their health, however, by physical exercise and being cautious about what they wear, eat and drink. 

It is now relatively easy to communicate between China and the United States. Students have access to email in the computer room located in their dormitory or from internet cafes in Hangzhou. Making phone calls to and from the States is routine, though not inexpensive. Students can dial home by using a prepaid phone card purchased in China or by using a calling card from a major US telephone company. Mail and packages normally take 7-10 days to three weeks (sometimes longer) to arrive.

The Hangzhou Study Program also offers a number of opportunities to enhance students' professional development. If interested, students can teach English classes at elementary and secondary schools or colleges as well as at places such as YWCA, Victoria English School, etc. They may also tutor individual students in English lessons. Students can also work on projects that help them develop certain skills or experience useful for their planned careers. In the past, such projects included working in Chinese church-sponsored nursing homes and rehab centers for deaf children, taking formal lessons in traditional Chinese medicine and privately tutored classes in Chinese music, martial arts, and serving as business interns. Actual details of such projects, however, have to be worked out with the resident directors on an individual basis and in advance.

How to Apply

Students interested in the Hangzhou Program should contact either Valparaiso University's Office of International Programs or faculty advisers at their own college.The deadline for applying to the fall 2010 Hangzhou Study Program is March 31, 2010.As soon as the Selection Committee at Valparaiso University has acted on the applications, all students will be notified of the decision by email.

To contact the Office of International Programs at VU, please contact:

    Julie Maddox, Director of Study Abroad Programs

    Office of International Programs

    Valparaiso University

    Valparaiso, IN 46383

    Phone: (219) 464-5333

    Fax:   (219) 464-6868

    Email: Julie.maddox@valpo.edu

You can also contact the International Studies Office at the Lutheran Colleges China Consortium Member Institutions:

Concordia College, Bronxville, NY

Concordia College, Moorehead, MN

Concordia College, Seward, NE13

Concordia College, River Forest, IL

Luther College, Decorah, IA

Roanoke College, Salem, VA

Thiel College, Greenville, PA

Valparaiso University, Valparaiso, IN

Waldorf College, Forest City, IA

Wartburg College, Waverly, IA

Wittenberg University, Springfield, OH