CIMU Director Farewell Letter

Dear Friends,

The Confucius Institute at Miami University (CIMU) was established in 2007 as the first CI in the state of Ohio. From day one, we have supported Miami University’s second foundational goal to “promote a diverse culture of inclusion, integrity, and collaboration that deepens understanding and embraces intercultural and global experiences.” It is with mixed feelings that I write this farewell newsletter, following the announcement that CIMU will close on June 30, 2020.

These past thirteen years, we have grown from predominantly teaching Chinese language classes at Miami to also hosting and participating in a remarkable number of broader activities. I am proud that we have been able to host and co-host academic and cultural programs; invite renowned Chinese artists, musicians, leading scholars, and cultural icons to our campus and community; share free community events; regularly engage, connect, and help Miami students; and support various Miami departments and offices as well as local schools. To name a few highlights, in recent years, we have:

  • Brought the 2018 Chinese National Collegiate Marcia Art Gold Medalist to teach Miami students martial arts and offer Tai chi ranking tests,
  • Invited the 2018 American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) National Language Teacher of the Year award-winner to provide Chinese teaching training to local teachers, and
  • Hosted the annual Uptown Oxford Chinese Festival, which is an incredible example of how Miami and Oxford join together as one community.

I have been deeply moved by your appreciation and positive feedback as a result of our efforts, as well as your eagerness to engage in our events with an open mind. These friendships and this support have meant the world to us and made the work we did year-round rewarding.

I would like to extend a special thank you to the Chinese international students and their families for their enthusiasm in proudly sharing their cultures. They have volunteered as performers, language tutors, activity coordinators, workshop presenters, and much, much more. It is their energy and dedication that helped make CIMU activities such a success.

I am also particularly thankful to our team for their unique contributions, our partner school Liaoning Normal University in China for their consistent support, and Miami University for its endorsement and dedication to embracing diversity and inclusion.

Although our office doors will be closed starting June 30, the relationships and lines of communication we have built will always remain open.


Chen Zhao
Director, Confucius Institute
Miami University