The Confucius Institute at the University of Idaho (UICI) was established on April 15, 2013 as the first Confucius Institute in the State of Idaho. It has been in full operation since August 2013. The Institute is housed within the University of Idaho’s historic Administration Building, providing the program excellent visibility. The office spaces and a new Chinese library are modern, welcoming and frequently visited by senior university officials and students interested in learning more about China, its language, and cultural heritage.
The Institute currently has fourteen staff members, including two co-directors (one each from the University of Idaho and the South China University of Technology), seven Chinese language instructors, two martial arts instructors, a program assistant, a program and advising specialist, and a full-time administrative coordinator from the University of Idaho.
The Confucius Institute’s arrival to the Inland Northwest has been welcomed with much excitement from parents, educators and business leaders. The institute is continuing its development of language instruction and cultural exchange programs for Idaho communities. As of 2016 it has begun the process of expanding its outreach programs to other areas such as the north Idaho panhandle and into the Treasure Valley. Mandarin language classes are now being offered to K-12 students in both regions and more UI Confucius Classrooms are set to come online in the coming years. Since its inception, the UI Confucius Institute has partnered with several local organizations such as historical societies, chambers of commerce, and fellow educational institutions to bring several arts and educational events to community members around the state and region beyond. The UI Confucius Institute has led several educational and student delegations to China since 2014 and brought in many specialists, artisans, and visiting scholars to Idaho, continuing to serve as a bridge for educational and economic exchange.
Missions and Goals
The University of Idaho Confucius Institute's mission is to further the understanding of Chinese language and culture, to encourage faculty and student exchange and to foster economic development between the United States and China. In this endeavor, the university is partnering with the South China University of Technology in Guangzhou, China.
The establishment of UICI is part of the university strategy to reinforce its role as a leading research and teaching center in the world. Working with the University’s existing network of partners in the education, business and third sectors, the Confucius Institute will be a focus for promoting greater appreciation and understanding of Chinese culture and in supporting the increasing collaboration between Idaho and China. It aims to become a best possible Chinese teaching and learning center in the Northwest of the U.S. & a most distinctive CI in the world. UICI aims to achieve sustainable integration of Chinese language, culture and engagement into campus and regional community life.
About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho helps students to succeed and become leaders. Its land-grant mission furthers innovative scholarly and creative research to grow Idaho's economy and serve a statewide community. From its main campus in Moscow, Idaho, to 70 research and academic locations statewide, UI emphasizes real-world application as part of its student experience. UI combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. It is home to the Vandals. For information, visit www.uidaho.edu.