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Northwestern News: Students Will Study Green Technology in China 

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Karey Fuhs
Assistant Director, IPD Study Abroad
(847) 467-6953

Schedule Appointment

-Not open to non-NU students-
Location: Beijing and Hangzhou, China 
University: Peking University, Wanxiang Polytechnic
Term: Summer Quarter
Program Dates (2014): June 23 - August 3
Application Deadline: March 1, 2015
Language Requirement: None - all classes are taught in English
Academic Interests: Environmental Studies, Engineering, Chinese Studies


This competitive summer fellowship program, sponsored by the Wanxiang Group, IPD, and ISEN, allows students to study renewable energy in the United States and China while gaining exposure to Chinese language and culture. On-campus lectures and a visit to Wanxiang America Corporation’s solar panel manufacturing facility during Spring Quarter provide students with a foundation for understanding energy and sustainability within a comparative context. Wanxiang Fellows begin their summer abroad experience with four weeks of courses at Peking University in Beijing and program excursions to historic sites. Then, students participate in a two-week intensive program at Hangzhou Wanxiang Polytechnic, where they explore issues of energy technology and application through lectures by Wanxiang researchers and practitioners and site visits. Students will develop group projects on energy and sustainability topics of their choice and present them upon return to Northwestern in the fall.


Founded in 1898, Peking University, colloquially known as “Beida,” was the first formally established modern national university of China. With over 30,000 students, of which seven percent are international students, Peking University is a premiere institution for education and research, particularly in natural and social sciences. The campus is located in northwest Beijing, in the Haidian district, which is concentrated with many well-known colleges and universities.
Hangzhou Wanxiang Polytechnic, where students will spend the final two weeks of the program, specializes in science and technology.


Energy and Sustainability in China (1 credit)
In this course, which culminates in a two-week experiential program at Hangzhou Wanxiang Polytechnic, students will learn about the unique environmental challenges that exist in China and the new innovations that are being developed to respond to these challenges. The course begins during Spring Quarter at Northwestern with an introduction to the study of the environment and sustainability and a visit to the Wanxiang America solar panel assembly and production plant in Rockford, IL. While in Hangzhou, students will learn from researchers at Wanxiang Polytechnic and practitioners at Wanxiang Group, and will go on various experiential field trips, such as to a solar farm, electric vehicle factory, and energy storage station, etc. Upon returning to Northwestern, students will report on their experience.
Course Instructor: Yip-Wah Chung

Chinese Language: Interdisciplinary Course (1 credit)
While there is no language prerequisite to participate in the China summer program, students are required to take intensive language training while in Beijing. Seven levels are offered, depending on the student’s skill level. The material covered during the program is equivalent to one quarter of Chinese class at Northwestern.
The courses will be taught by Chinese language instructors from Peking University.

Choice of:
China in Transition: Ideology, Political Economy, Law, and Relations with the United States (1 credit)
This course aims to provide a hands-on introduction to Chinese politics, economy, and legal system, as well as US-China relations. It is intended to help students make sense of what they observe and experience, while also offering an opportunity to explore selected themes and topics in greater depth and to acquire a more visceral understanding of how institutions and processes operate in China.
Course Instructor: William Hurst

Public Health in China (1 credit)
This seminar consists of a series of lectures on the health care system and public health in China. Lectures will introduce students to the most common health problems in China, the role of government, the organization of the health care system, and issues such as environmental health, SARS, HIV/AIDS, and emergency preparedness and disaster relief.
Course Instructore: Peiyu Wang


Students will live in the Zhong Guan Xin Yuan Global Village international student dormitory in shared suites while in Beijing. Lunches are provided on weekdays, but students are responsible for breakfasts and dinners. In Hangzhou, students will also share a double-occupancy room at Hangzhou Wanxiang Polytechnic, and most meals are provided.


Beijing Historic & Cultural Sites
While in Beijing, students will participate in weekend excursions to important historical and cultural sites, which will give context to Chinese society and civilization. Visits typically include guided tours of Tian'anmen Square, the Forbidden City, the Temple of Heaven, and the Jinshanling section of the Great Wall, among others.

The financial hub of Mainland China, Shanghai is also the largest city in the world by population and the flashy, vibrant centerpiece of the booming Chinese economy. Students will have the opportunity to tour Shanghai at the end of the program and visit such sites as the Bund, the Yuyuan Gardens, and the shopping districts, among others.


Summer 2014 Program Fee = $3,300, which includes tuition, housing, program-related excursions, and lunches in Beijing. All expenses in Hangzhou, in addition to international airfare, flight from Beijing to Hangzhou, HTH Worldwide health insurance, the Study Abroad Administrative fee, and visa fees, are covered by the Wanxiang Fellowship. Students should also budget approximately $1,400 for books and discretionary expenses, including meals, non-program transportation, personal travel, and other incidentals.

Students applying to this program are not eligible to apply for IPD Study Abroad Fellowships, but they may be eligible for external funding opportunities. Students participating in this program are subject to Withdrawal Policies for Northwestern-Sponsored Programs.

For more information about billing, finances, and financial aid for study abroad, please refer to the Money Matters resource page of the Study Abroad Office website or contact Krista Buda Bethel in the Financial Aid Office.