On 26 of May 2014, members of Confucius Institute at Rhodes University (CIRU) bid farewell to the Vice Chancellor, Dr. Saleem Badat, of Rhodes University. It is an emotional occasion when the staff recalled the precious support that VC has given to CIRU from the very beginning of its establishment. An MOU was signed in 2007 between Rhodes University and the Headquarters of Confucius Institutes /Hanban in Beijing and in the following year a supplementary agreement was signed between Rhodes University and Jinan University in Guangzhou, China, which was followed by the start of the Chinese Studies programme at the School of Languages in 2009.
During the past few years, the VC has visited the Headquarters of CI's / Hanban in Beijing twice and established a cordial working relationship with Hanban and the partner university in China. This helps greatly in consolidating the partnership between CIRU and the Headquarters / Hanban and in guaranteeing the funding and support from Hanban, which is described by the VC as a welcome funding effort that provides the financial support much needed for the development of the academic programme of such a kind at Rhodes University. The VC's support enables CIRU to play its crucial role in its academic endeavor in the establishment of Chinese Studies programme at the School of Language, which has proved to be unique in South Africa and provides the students a rare opportunity to expand their vision into the Orient. As a result, it brought not only continued funding support from the Headquarters but also the recognition by Hanban to attribute CIRU as one of the few "Model CI's" around the world, with an additional building fund of one million US dollars.
Dr. Badat's departure will definitely be sorely missed by the CIRU that owes so much of its successful operation to his support. But the CIRU strongly believes that with the solid foundation that the VC has helped to establish, CIRU will have continued support from the Headquarters and will continue to make its contribution to the academic growth of Chinese Studies programme at Rhodes University and to serve the academic needs and cultural understanding of Rhodes students and Grahamstown community.Source: Confucius Institute
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