On March 20, Tianjin University of Sport and University of Minnesota celebrated the grand opening of a unique center that will share U.S. culture with the Chinese people through the medium of sport. The US-China Sport Cultural Exchange Center is funded by a $100,000 grant from the U.S. Department of State.
The main objective of the center is to demonstrate to the Chinese people how sport culture and values are integrated into the larger American society and how these cultural values influence American viewpoints, global outlook, and engagement in business, education, politics, law, arts, and communication.
“Many concepts drawn from sport, such as ‘fair play’ and ‘pursuit of excellence’ are infused in the values and beliefs of Americans, regardless of whether they participate in sports,” said Joan Brzezinski, executive director of the China Center. “This center will help the Chinese develop a deeper understanding of how sport culture impacts all of our interactions, whether person-to-person or country-to-country.”
The center will organize events and provide resources, such as athletic exchanges and collaborations, guest lectures by University faculty and other experts, a reading room of print and online resources, and training for teachers to integrate the culture of sport into their curricula.
“Sport is a tie between cultures without dispute. It served to open the doors for new relations between the U.S. and China as a strong connection between the two peoples,” says President Yao Jiaxin “The new center in Tianjin will be a window to showcase American sports and physical education to promote health, fitness, human development and social-culture integration in China.”