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Asia Society video on why Mandarin proficiency is key

February 2, 2011


Beyond Linguistic Proficiency

Students as Linguists and Ambassadors

By Jeff Wang

“If you want one year of prosperity, then grow grain. If you want 10 years of prosperity, then grow trees. But if you want 100 years of prosperity, then you grow people.”

Quoting a Chinese proverb, US President Barack Obama offered this toast to his guest, visiting Chinese President Hu Jintao, at a state dinner on January 19. The two heads of state had more than a full plate of issues to discuss during Mr. Hu’s recent visit to Washington, many of which were urgent and thorny. However, as Mr. Obama suggested in his toast, to ensure the long-term prosperity of both nations, we must focus on people, especially the next generation of young people that will shape a shared future.

Read more, and watch the video, here.


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