Confucius Institute events and programs touch the lives of those involved. On this page you will find testimonials from students and teachers who have gained something from their experience with Kennesaw State University's Confucius Institute.

How can loving those I teach make a difference in their lives?

HSK RecipientBy Yan Zhou
Chinese Instructor at CIKSU
April, 2015

“If you want to influence learners for good, you should not only love to teach; you should love each person you teach. As you show your love for those you teach, they become more open to learning from you and more aware of their eternal worth.” I felt deeply compelled when I read this quote for the first time, so I treat it as the essence of my teaching philosophy and my eternal teaching aspirations.

Time is fleeting, and the pursuit of knowledge is constant. It has been 9 months since I began teaching Chinese at Kennesaw State University. I treasure my teaching opportunity and I devote myself to Chinese language teaching whole-heartedly. I am very grateful to the generous support from both Confucius Institute and Foreign Language Department of Kennesaw State University; kind instruction from Ken Jin and Dr. Yumin Ao; as well as all my excellent and hardworking students.

William Arthur Ward once said: “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates and the great teacher inspires.” With all my sustained strength and efforts, I firmly believe that I will make effective and immediate contributions to Chinese language teaching and will devote myself to the Sino-US cultural exchanges earnestly and persistently.

Chinese Language Changed My Life

Jacobi Itkow and Xu LinBy Jacobi Itkow
Kennesaw State University Student
Spring Semester 2015

Ladies and gentlemen, Good morning! My name is Jacobi Itkow and I am from Kennesaw State University, GA.  I am very happy to have this opportunity in Chinese Bridge Competition and the title of my speech is Chinese Language Changed My Life.

先生们,女生们,大家早上好!我叫杰克比,来自肯尼索大学,很高兴能有机会参加汉语桥,我今天的演讲题目是 ----- 中文改变了我的生活

When I was in high school I had anxiety problems with people. I spent my entire day without saying a word to anyone. My anxiety was so bad that I was forced to leave high school.


Things were bad at home so I ran away to live in Montana. I stayed with essentially strangers I met on the internet. I was nervous, but because I was on my own for the first time in my life, I was forced to meet people and communicate for the first time in my life. Strangers were great to me, they were nice and hospitable. I spent a year in Montana, meeting and living with many different and interesting people including lumberjacks, schizophrenics, famous artists, hardworking laborers and homeless people.  Being with and talking to all these people changed my life, and after my adventures in Montana, I went on a similar trip to North Ontario in Canada. Where I stayed for three years staying mostly with a financially poor Native American family. Surprisingly nothing bad ever happened to me and because of all the support and generosity of all the people I met, shortly put, I gained confidence in myself and got over my fears of talking to people.  But this was the past, I want to talk more about recent times.

家里实在呆不下去了,于是我就离家出走去了蒙大拿州。我和在互联网上认识的人住在一起,以前我们根本不认识。开始我很紧张,因为这是我平生第一次独自生活, 我不得不见这些我第一次认识的人并和他们交流相处。这些陌生人非常好客,对我也很好。我在蒙大拿州花了一年时间认识生活中很多不同的有趣的人,包括伐木工,精神分裂症,著名艺术家,勤奋的劳动者和无家可归的人。和这些人的交往改变了我的生活,蒙大拿州冒险之后,我继续在加拿大北安大略省开始类似的冒险之旅。我在那里呆了三年,并住在当地一个非常穷苦的美国家庭。所幸,没有什么不好的事情发生在我身上,因为我所遇到的朋友对我都很好,他们的慷慨支持给了我自信,并帮助我克服与人交往的恐惧。但是,这些都是过去,我想谈谈最近。

As an adult with confidence, but a person getting older with no real achievements in life.  I became Interested in Chinese culture as well as missing the feelings of traveling. I decided to delve into a new language in order to one day experience living and working in china. After spending some time studying Chinese. There is nothing I’m more proud of than when I can have a simple conversation in Chinese. I have had many accomplishments in my life, but Chinese feels the best.  It’s the most proud of myself I have ever been. But my accomplishment in Chinese was definitely not completely my own doing. 

作为一个有信心、年纪越来越大、在生活中却没有真正成就的成年人,我开始对中国文化和旅行感兴趣。花了一些时间研究中国后,我决定学习一门新的语言 --- 中文,就是为了将来有一天能去中国工作并体验生活。没有什么比能用中文进行一个简单的对话更让我感到骄傲和自豪的事了。生活中我有许多成就,会说中文是我最大的成就,也是我有生以来最值得骄傲的事情。但这个成就绝对不能完全归功于我自己。

My first day of Chinese class is on August 19, 2014,I knew that learning a new language was difficult, I worried I would start learning Chinese and later quit and someday fail. I admit I have failed before, with jobs and goals that got too hard. I quit. These past failures did loom in my head. I felt nervous again. Old feelings returned and I felt a little afraid. But my Chinese teacher Yan ZHOU, was very supportive and her attitude for teaching Chinese was enthusiastic and she took a very personal approach for teaching her class. Every time our class made progress, it seemed to me like she really felt happy for us and her passion for us motivated me to learn more. I also had the chance to meet people in the Confucius Institute in Kennesaw State University that were very eager to help me learn and understand Chinese language and culture. Talking with them is very fun and encouraging. As well as my classmate, Jan, Who has similar goals as me and motivates me with his great enthusiasm and spirit --- studying Chinese and gonging to China. With my teacher’s kind encourage and patient instruction, I took HSK examination (sponsored by Confucius Institute in Kennesaw State University) on October 11, I passed successfully, I took HSK on December 6, the other 7 students and I took HSK together, 6 of us succeeded, Jan even got 199, the total mark is 200. My success in learning Chinese and these new people I’ve met, I’ve used them as a support for my personal struggles that they don’t even know about. They give me more and more confidence to achieve success. Thanks to them I will not be afraid of failing. It’s not a question that comes up anymore.  As I personally evolved in Montana using the help of others, I feel a new evolution of mine coming with studying Chinese -- The ability and confidence to succeed.

2014年8月19日,上中文课的第一天,我就知道学习一门新语言是困难的。我真担心我会开始想学,后来退出,最终完全失败。必须承认,我以前有过太多的失败,我不干了。现在,过去的失败又重新笼罩在我的头上。我再次感到紧张。旧的感觉回来了,我甚至有点害怕。但是,我的中文老师 — 周妍老师的支持给了我信心,她积极热忱的工作态度深深影响了我,她采取非常个性化的方法来教我们。每当我们班取得一点点小的进步,我都能看出来,她由衷地为 我们感到高兴,我也能感觉到是她的工作热情给了我们更多的学习动力,同时,她也给了我在肯尼索州立大学孔子学院认识更多中国人的机会,他们真诚地鼓励并帮 助我学习和了解中国语言和文化,与孔子学院老师们的有趣交谈给了我很大的鼓舞。还有我的同学,约翰,他也有和我一样的目标 --- 学中文,去中国。这个共同目标激励着我和约翰,给了我们极大的热情和精神。在周妍老师真诚鼓励和耐心指导下,10月11日我参加了HSK考试(肯尼索大学孔子学院赞助),顺利通过。12月6日,我和其他七名学生参加HSK考试,6人顺利通过,满分200分的试卷,约翰考了199分。 我把学中文的成功和这些新认识的孔子学院的老师当作我的个人奋斗目标,孔院的老师甚至可能现在都还不知道这件事,但是,正是他们给了我越来越多的信心取得 成功,多亏了他们,我才不会害怕失败。我不再惧怕上中文课。正如我在蒙大拿州的个人发展来自于别人的帮助那样,我觉得我的新进步来源于中文学习 ---  成功的能力和信心。

I will keep working hard. I will not quit.  It’s only a matter of time until I master Chinese.  I use the experience and kindness of others to help myself achieve more self-growth. I feel like we are all here to help each other. I feel the benefits from the help of others and I hope to also help other people as well. It’s corny, but together we achieve more. And once again I’m appreciative of all the help I’ve received in the past from Confucius Institute of Kennesaw State University.

我会继续努力。我不会退缩。精通中文对我来说只是一个时间问题。我用别人的经验和善良来帮助自己实现更多的自我成长。我觉得我们都在这里互相帮助。我感觉到 从别人那里获取帮助的好处,我希望自己也能帮助其他人。这是老生常谈,但是互相帮助会取得更大成功。再次感谢过去我在孔子学院得到的所有帮助。