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April showers campus with official state visits from China


Left: Heilongjiang Executive Vice Governor Du Jiahao displayed a Wisconsin sweatshirt he had just received from UW-Madison Provost Paul Deluca. Right: Shaanxi Province Governor Zhao Zhengyong offered UW Vice Provost Gilles Bousquet a plate embossed with a Qin dynasty-era scene of terracotta war horses.

The month of April featured two state visits to Wisconsin from provincial leaders in China -- and both groups included time on the campus of the University of Wisconsin-Madison as part of their itineraries.

First the governor of Shaanxi Province, Zhao Zhengyong, led a nine-member delegation to Madison on April 12. The business community and Wisconsin Commerce Secretary Paul Jadin joined University of Wisconsin-Madison professors and administrators at a banquet on campus honoring the guests from Shaanxi, which is located in central China. Governor Zhao encouraged students from UW-Madison to consider his province for study abroad experiences. He noted the rich history of Xi-an, today’s provincial capital and culturally significant as the capital for six Chinese dynasties, including the Han and the Tang. Governor Zhao presented UW Vice Provost Gilles Bousquet with a plate depicting the famous terracotta war horses of Qin Dynasty-era Xi-an.

Vice Provost Bousquet remarked that UW Chancellor Biddy Martin made two trips to China in 2010. “Maybe she will be able to make a special trip to the historic city of Xi-an,” he said.

Less than two weeks after the Shaanxi visit, a delegation from Heilongjiang Province arrived in Madison, led by Executive Vice Governor Du Jiahao. Heilongjiang, located in northeastern China at the border with Russia, has been Wisconsin’s sister state since 1982. The ten-member delegation was escorted by representatives of the Chicago consulate for the People’s Republic of China.

The delegation took an extensive tour of the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery and then headed to the top floor of Van Vleck, which offers sweeping views of campus, to meet with UW-Madison Provost Paul Deluca.

“We have learned that this is a top university with many Nobel prize winners and also an international university with many Chinese students,” Vice Governor Du told Provost Deluca.

The two discussed possibilities for administrative training of Heilongjiang leaders, student exchanges, and increased cooperation in dairy science research.

Both the Shaanxi and the Heilongjiang delegations also toured the state Capitol and met with Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker.


University and State of Wisconsin representatives escorted the delegation from Heilongjiang Province past Van Vleck Hall during a walk through campus April 25.

To see slideshows for these two delegations, click on:





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Click here to learn about President Obama’s “100,000 Strong Initiative” to increase the number and diversity of American students studying in China.


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