East Asia CenterNewsletter On-line

The University of Virgina
east asia center
February 2001

Grants Available for Study in Asia

        In what could  be a major coup for UVa’s commitment to overseas education, the Institute of International Education (IIE) was recently given a generous grant from the Freeman Foundation for a program designed to increase the number of American undergraduates who study in Asia.  The program offers awards of up to $7000, depending on the length of program the student seeks to undertake.  Over the next three years, the IIE plans to offer 1200 grants  nationwide. The recipients’ sole obligation is to recount  their experiences on their home campuses and in local communities in order to spread understanding of Asia and encourage study abroad.
        In light of Asia's increasing importance to the United States' economic well-being and global security, the Freeman Foundation believes that Americans are severely lacking in familiarity with the unique cultures of Asia and that there are not enough Americans who can communicate effectively in the less commonly taught languages of East and Southeast Asia.  The foundation’s new program also seeks to respond to the fact that only five percent of all American students studying abroad do so in Asia.  Finally, Foundation officials have noted that while there are hundreds of programs to study abroad in Asia, there have been few funding opportunities. The Freeman-ASIA program seeks to fill this gap.
        Because there are few eligibility requirements (see below) and many awards, UVa applicants who meet the qualifications listed should stand a good chance of success. 
Application forms are available online at: http://www.iie.org/pgms/Freeman-ASIA

Deadlines are March 1 for summer programs and April 1 for the fall.  Further information and assistance is available at the East Asia Center. 


 Spring 2001 Events

 EAC Job Opening

 Chinese Ambassador's Visit

 Weedon Grant Information

     Freeman-ASIA Grant Eligibility Requirements:

  • Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents at the time of application.
  • Applicants must be currently enrolled as undergraduates in good standing at accredited U.S. colleges or universities.
  • Applicants must currently receive financial aid or have verifiable need for financial assistance to study abroad in Asia.
  • Priority will be given to students with no previous experience in the country in which they plan to study.
  • Applicant’s study abroad adviser must verify financial need and endorse a student's application before it is submitted to IIE.
  • Within 3 months after return from a study abroad program in Asia, awardees must fulfill a service requirement to promote study abroad in Asia on their home campus and in their home community.
  • Awardees must submit a final report to IIE within 6 months after return to the U.S., summarizing their experiences, including the implementation of the service requirement.

East Asia Center Job Opening

        The East Asia Center would like to hire an Assistant to the Director to begin work late this spring, (with training taking place since late March).  This job has previously been performed by a graduate student who is early in his/her studies so that the individual can continue in the job for at least two years, including some summer work.  It requires 15-20 hours of work a week, at $10 an hour. Duties include managing the East Asia Center office and overseeing the work of one or two staff, providing administrative support (including completion of financial paperwork), assistance with the Center's programs such as the speakers series, MA program, and newsletter, and maintaining the East Asia Center's web pages.  Candidates with computing skills and some knowledge of website management are preferred, although training in the latter can be provided by current staff members.  The assistant would work with center director Anne Kinney. Please contact Shino Watanabe (sw3r@virginia.edu) as soon as possible if you are interested in applying for the position.

Ambassador Li Addresses Packed House

        Without politically and culturally divergent states we would live in a monotonous and tedious world.  This gentle reproach to Americans critical of China’s Communist Party dictatorship and human rights abuses underscored the diplomatic message of Chinese Ambassador Li Zhaoxing's address to a standing-room-only crowd in the Rotunda's Dome Room on November 27.  Although Ambassador Li conceded that many of the cultural and political differences between the United States and China are real and perhaps irreconcilable, he espoused the belief that the United States and China have more than enough incentive to seek a collaborative relationship.
        Citing common security concerns such as the stability of the Korean Peninsula, the nuclear arms race on the South Asian sub-continent, and international crime, Ambassador Li made a case for continued Chinese-American cooperative endeavors and global leadership.  Mr. Li also pointed out the non-political ties which already bind the nations together, taking time to congratulate all the Chinese students in attendance on their academic achievements and describing the American and Chinese economies as "inter-dependent."
        While addressing questions from the audience, Ambassador Li largely echoed previously stated Chinese positions on issues ranging from  Falun Gong to Tibetan separatism. Referring to recent tensions across the Taiwan Straits, Ambassador Li noted, "Had it not been for the Korean War, this issue would have long been resolved."  The ambassador suggested that the Taiwan issue need not stand in the way of a strategic relationship between the United States and China.  He went on to characterize Falun Gong as an evil cult whose leader likens himself to Jesus Christ.
        Ambassador Li summed up his government's modus operandi as follows: "On matters of principle, stand like a rock; on matters of taste, swim with the current."

Chinese Students Invovled

        UVa's elementary Chinese learners were actively involved in preparing and coordinating activities for the Week of Chinese New Year Celebration (Jan 23-27). Under Miao-fen Tseng's guidance, the kick-off event began with Panda's distribution of lucky money bags in Cabell Hall on Jan 23 and concluded on January 27 with a fashion show at the Fashion Square Mall’s Chinese Festival .
        UVa's elementary Chinese students have also launched a ground-breaking web project on student publications, funded by East Asia Center and the Language Lab. The web includes students' reflections, Chinese compositions, and self digital recordings. Ms. Tseng and her students have been invited by to demonstrate their project at the April meeting of  the National Council of Organizations of Less Commonly Taught Languages (NCOLCTL) in Washington D.C.


East Asia Center and Related Events Spring 2001

Thursday, February 15

Thursday, March 1

Wednesday, March 21

Friday, March 30

Tuesday, April 3

Friday, April 13

Friday, April 13

Friday, April 20

Monday, April 23


Jeremy Woodrum, Free Burma Coalition. "Conditions Under Burma's 38-year-old Military Dictatorship." Sponsored by Students Without Borders. (Cabell Hall 138, 7:00 p.m.)

Shuguang Zhang, Department of History, University of Maryland. "Strangling China: American Embargo, Sino-Soviet Alliance, and the Economic Cold War in Asia."  Co-sponsored by the Department of Government and Foreign Affairs and Department of History.  (Minor Hall 225, 3:30 p.m.) 

Jili Jiang, Author of Red Scarf Girl: A Memoir of the Cultural Revolution.  Co-sponsored by the Virginia Book Festival.  (University of Virginia Bookstore, 4:00 p.m.)

Nora Sausmikat, Department of Political Science/East Asian Studies, University of Duisburg in Germany.  "Political Generations and Political Reform in China."  Co-sponsored by the Department of History.  (Cabell Hall 311, 4:00 p.m.)

Bates Gill, Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution.  "Prospects for US-China Relations."  Co-sponsored by the Department of Government and Foreign Affairs and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. 
(Commonwealth, Newcomb Hall, 3:30p.m.)

Angela Leung, Director of the Institute of Social Science and Philosophy at the Academia Sinica, Taipei.  "Relations between the Environment and Diseases as Seen by Ming-Qing Doctors."  (Minor Hall 225, 11:45a.m.)

Chuanren Ke, Department of Asian Languages and Literature, University of Iowa.  "The ACTFL Oral Proficiency Interview and Its Pedagogical Application."  Co-sponsored by Division of Asian and Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures, the Arts and Sciences Center for Instructional Technologies, the Middle East Studies Program, and the Center for South Asian  Studies.  (Cabell Hall 311, 4:00 p.m.)

Faculty/Students Sacred Biography Workshop
Panelists: Anne Kinney: "The Making of a Confucian Saint";
Chen Jinhua: "The Birth of a Polymath: The Genealogical Background of the Tang Monk-Scientist Yixing (673-727)"; 
Dorothy Wong: "The Process of Saint Making: Images of Xuanzang in East Asia"; 
Dominick Scarangello: "The Original Record of En the Ascetic: The Establishment of Lineage and Creation of a Sect."
Discussants: John Shepherd and David Germano
(Cabell Hall 311, 3:30 p.m.)

Charles Ramble, Oriental Institute, Oxford University.  "Sources for an Understanding 
of the Tibetan Landscape."  Co-sponsored by the Center for South Asian Studies. 
(South Meeting Room, Newcomb Hall, 3:00 p.m.)


Ellen Bayard Weedon East Asia Travel Grants

Each year the Grants Committee of the East Asia Center allocates money to be used to defray the cost of travel to East Asia by University faculty members and students.  These funds may be used to cover all or part of a round trip airfare between Charlottesville and East Asia. Travel within an East Asian country will not be covered by a Weedon travel grant.


The Ellen Bayard Weedon travel grant is available to any University of Virginia faculty member or student who:

  • intends to spend at least two weeks in East Asia pursuing study or research.
  • agrees to be in residence at the University during the subsequent academic year.
  • agrees to share with the University community knowledge and experience acquired in East Asia through lectures, colloquia, seminars, media presentations, etc.
In addition, student applicants must intend to enroll in structured programs offered by accredited academic institutions in East Asia, or plan to pursue a specific research project.


Applicants intending to spend two to eight weeks in East Asia under the conditions outlined herein may apply for a travel grant to cover 
partial (25% or more) round trip air fare between Charlottesville and East Asia.

Applicants intending to spend eight weeks or more in East Asia under the conditions outlined herein may apply for a travel grant to cover up to full round trip air fare between Charlottesville and East Asia

Under special circumstances students and faculty members may apply for up to full round trip air fare regardless of length of stay in East Asia, provided the trip has a sound and genuine professional or academic purpose, i.e., to attend a professional conference, to conduct research that can only be conducted in East Asia, etc. 

These travel grants cannot be used cover the following:  (1) trips designed to enable a student or faculty member to simply “visit” East Asia, (2) in-country travel, (3) program and/or conference fees, (4) lodging and accommodations.


Travel grant applications shall be judged according to the selection committee’s assessment of the quality of the applicant, the intellectual and academic cohesiveness of the applicant’s project, and financial need.  Preference shall be given to the applicants who have not recently been to East Asia and, in the following order, to:

               1 research, language and cultural study;
               2. participation in study tours;
               3. participation in conferences.

No single travel grant shall exceed one-third of available funds, and normally no more than half of the available funds shall be allocated to faculty members. 


  • Student applicants must submit three (3) copies of the application forms and two (2) supporting letters of recommendation from UVA faculty members.
  • Faculty applicants must provide a letter detailing their plans and anticipated travel costs. 
Application forms are available during office hours in the East Asia Center,  224 Minor Hall.  Completed applications are due by February 15, 2001 and should be returned to the East Asia Center.  (phone:  924-7836)

Margaret M. Coughlin Award
in Asian History



Graduating fourth-year student, any major, 12 hours credit in Asian studies including 6 hours in Asian history, commitment to pursue Asia interests in graduate school, in professional school, or in a career.

To Apply

Submit transcript, 2 supporting letters, a 500-word statement of purpose, and a seminar or term paper of at least 1000 words from an Asian history course, with the attached form, to Professor John Israel, History Department, Randall Hall, by 4:00 p.m. Wednesday March 21.  Award will be announced by April 1.


$2,500, up to $1500 for airfare to Asia, an award certificate, and recognition in graduation ceremonies.


Copies of this announcement and application forms are available in an envelope next to 228 Randall Hall as well as through the East Asian and South Asian centers in Minor Hall.

Additional Information

John Israel
History Department
Randall Hall