China 1+2+1

Accounting students, Stella Site Chen, 19, left, and Felicity Yuchen Xie, 17, socialized with other students Monday evening at a picnic behind Putnam Hall on the UW-Eau Claire campus. They are studying at UW-Eau Claire as part of the China 1+2+1 program.

Eau Claire Leader-Telegram staff photo by Andi Stempniak

China 1+2+1 = Success for Business Students

By Anthony Asuncion, Kelsey Bathke, Megan Behrens, Sarah Hagen, and Claire McGahan

1+2+1—while the number four comes to mind, at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire the sequence of numbers actually refers to the China 1+2+1 Partnership program.

The China 1+2+1 program is a dual degree program—students who complete the program receive two degrees—one from a Chinese university and one from an American university. Students begin their first year of study in China, then complete two years at a participating American university, and finish their fourth year of study at the Chinese university they first attended. To graduate from the program, China 1+2+1 students must complete the degree requirements of both universities they attend.

The China 1+2+1 Partnership program has seen impressive growth at UW-Eau Claire since Chancellor Levin-Stankvich established the program at the university in 2007. In 2008, UW-Eau Claire accepted four students. This year the program has 16 students. While the China 1+2+1 program is open to students with any major, nine of the 16 students currently at UW-Eau Claire are studying accounting and finance, according to Dr. D’Arcy Becker, chair of the Department of Accounting and Finance.

“They are excellent students who are very excited to learn about U.S. culture, including U.S. business practices and ordinary student life,” said Becker.

Why Study at UW-Eau Claire?

UW-Eau Claire is one of seventeen universities participating in the 1+2+1 program in the United States. There are many reasons why students choose UW-Eau Claire over the other U.S. partner schools, according to Shu Cheng, UW-Eau Claire Center for International Education Chinese Program coordinator. UW-Eau Claire has a good reputation, which makes the university appealing to Chinese students. The City of Eau Claire is one of the safest communities in the United States so Chinese parents feel more comfortable sending their son or daughter to Eau Claire rather than a larger city on the east or west coast. Students like the safety of a smaller community, but they also enjoy having access to a bigger city like Minneapolis. One student in the program even wanted to go somewhere with snow, according to Cheng.

Benefits of the Program

Shu Cheng

The China 1+2+1 program is a great way for students to improve their English skills, build their resumes and learn more about the American culture.

“I can get two degrees—one from my home university and one from UW-Eau Claire—which makes it easier for me to find a job in the future,” according to Stella Site Chen, an accounting student in the program.

The students in the program live in the dorms to give them a cultural emersion experience. Living in the dorms, and becoming active in student organizations also helps student improve their English language skills and meet American students, some of whom may become lifelong friends.

“It is a good way for you to learn other country's culture and accumulate your own life experience,” according to Felicity Yuchen Xie, an accounting student in the program. “Also, it will bring you a lot of fun,” Xie said. “Sometimes, you'll make your lifelong friend in the other country,” she continued. “The most important thing is that you can learn much more apart from textbooks.”

Anthony Asuncion Kelsey Bathke Megan Behrens Claire McGahan

From left to right: Anthony Asuncion is a senior management major from Cottage Grove, MN; Kelsey Bathke is a senior management major from Bloomer, WI; Megan Behrens is a senior marketing major from Saint Charles, MN; Sarah Hagen is a senior marketing major from Apple Valley, MN; and Claire McGahan (not pictured) is a senior marketing major with a sales emphasis from Oregon, WI. They wrote this article for their BCOM Advanced Writing class.

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