UD Success at a Chinese Language Competition

Young Hwi Kim from South Korea, a student of the Confucius Institute of the Faculty of Humanities of the University of Debrecen and trumpet Master of Music student of the Faculty of Music has won the country final of the Chinese Bridge Competition, which took place online on 27 May, organised by the Confucius Institute of the University of Szeged with the support of the Chinese Embassy in Hungary.

The Chinese Bridge Competition is a language contest for young people from around the world studying Chinese. This was the first time UD had delegated a student for the Hungarian round.

University students who are between 18–30 years of age, are not Chinese nationals and whose native language is not Chinese are entitled to participate in the annual competition, which is increasingly popular around the world.

This year, competitors have had to complete two tasks in the Hungarian round: They had to talk about a topic of their choice for four minutes and submit a 3-minute video displaying their talents, which could be prepared in advance.

When he was a child, Young Hwi Kim lived in China for three years, where he got an insight into the local culture and studied Chinese. He has been a student of the Faculty of Music at UD in the framework of a scholarship programme since 2016.

- I found the Chinese language in the range of degree programmes of the Confucius Institute of the Faculty of Humanities in 2019. The programme has allowed me to refresh and improve my Chinese language skills – Young Hwi Kim told hirek.unideb.hu. In the written part of the competition, he wrote about his nanny in Beijing in his essay entitled “My second mother.”

As he had a natural talent for writing calligraphic Chinese characters, he recorded in is video how he had painted the lines of a well-known poet.

His teacher, who has helped him prepare for the competition, Zhao Chuanbing, professor at the Confucius Institute of the Faculty of Humanities thinks that his student is naturally good at writing traditional Chinese characters and very diligent as well, without which it would be almost impossible to learn the use of Chinese characters.

Winning the Hungarian competition has opened the door for Young Hwi Kim to the European round, where he will represent the University of Debrecen again. The students who perform well in the contest may win a scholarship to finance their Chinese studies, among other valuable prizes.

This year, 171 students attended the beginner- or advanced-level Chinese language courses of the Confucius Institute. They also learned about Chinese culture and calligraphy.
The Institute has been accredited by HSK International Education Technology Co., Ltd., a Beijing-based Mandarin Chinese language exam centre, which means that from 2022 the Confucius Institute of UD, as the first organisation in Hungary, can organise online Chinese language exams, in addition to the in-person exams.

Currently, the staff of the Institute includes two Chinese teachers, in addition to the Chinese director. Pál Csontos, Hungarian director of the Confucius Institute said that they would all participate in the beginner course of the Summer University this year, in order to strengthen their contact and communication with their students by gaining an insight into Hungarian culture and language.

Press Centre – BZs