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The 17th Mandarin Speech Contest for International Students held at PKU

DEC . 11 2017
Peking University, Dec. 3, 2017: From November 27 to 29, the 17th PKU Mandarin Speech Contest for International Students was held in Florence Fang Building, Room B101. Themed “China in My Eyes”, the contest was divided into 3 rounds in proportion to students’ proficiency in Mandarin and participated by 40 contestants from School of Chinese as a Second Language, School of International Studies, and Department of History.

The Contest

The speeches delivered by the international students ranged from modernization in present-day China, to their impressions of studying in China, novel discoveries in exploring campus, and difficulties experienced in a foreign land.

Among the various topics, the most noticeable ones were speeches focusing on the new changes and advancements in Chinese society. The speeches “Two aspects of China,” “My Impression on China,” and “Observing China from the ‘New Four Great Inventions’ ” paid high praise to the convenience brought by the new inventions (high-speed rail, online shopping, mobile payment and bicycle-sharing) in China. “Here I Come, China” and “The Mission of International Students” extolled China’s booming economy and bright future; “My Road to Beijing” admired the enormous changes in Chinese cities and rural areas. Besides, international students thoroughly discussed the topic of “the Chinese dream” and expressed their optimistic expectations for China’s future.

Contestant delivering a speech

Some excellent speeches exhibited their novel experiences and feelings about the food, clothing, housing, transportation, education and entertainment in China. “I Took Trains in China” talked about the fascinating experience when traveling by train in places of interest around China; “China of Everybody and My Own” shared the contestant’s experience of participating in a flag-lowering ceremony and demonstrated the significance of “Team Spirit,” which is the key to the rise of China. Some contestants who are ardent lovers of “Hip-pop in China” not only reeled off Chinese hip-pop culture, but also performed impromptu B-BOX and street dance, which received thunderous applause from the audience.

Contestant delivering a speech

As PKU students, the international students highly cherished their memories studying in PKU and manifested this sentiment in speeches. “PKU and PKUers in My Eyes” described arduous students and their colorful campus life; “Happy Learning in Chinese Dactylology” told of the sympathy and empathy aroused in her heart while caring for the deaf-mute in the activity organized by PKU Loving Heart Society. “An irretrievable Opportunity” and “Beijing in My Eyes” expressed the contestants’ confidence in future studies and enthusiasm about the campus life.

Contestant delivering a speech

In the contest, the contestants spoke with sincerity and shared their experience of studying in a foreign country. “ABC (American Born Chinese) and China” and “Dream and China” voiced the love and passion held young for China of those students who viewed China as their second homeland. “Why I Found China Charming” focused on the unique transformation of the attitudes towards Chinese language from resistance to adoration. “Which Country Do I Belong to” talked about the student’s confusion of national identity and the significant switch from the perplexity of being a multiracial to the acknowledgments of Chinese culture.

Contestant delivering a speech

Besides ingenious subject matter, the international students also displayed excellent oral skills and language proficiency. In high spirits, they freely and fluently wielded various ways of expression intermixed with buzzwords, slangs, and idioms, which revealed their profound love for Chinese language and extensive knowledge of Chinese culture. The brilliant performances given by the speakers won high praises from the judges and heated up the enthusiasm on the spot. 

In each round, 4 international students acted as hosts, and 5 teachers as judges. After the performance, the judges scored each contestant in terms of language, content, performance, time, and effect. The winner was declared and awarded on the scene. Meanwhile, the monitors of each class came together to discuss and elect “the Most Popular Award.” The contest awarded 3 first prizes, 7 the second prizes, 11 the third prizes, 3 most popular prizes, and several honorable mentions.

The hosts

The contest, a core constituent of the 14th PKU International Culture Festival, was co-sponsored by School of Chinese as a Second Language and Office of International Relations, PKU. 
Written by: Wei Yunqi
Edited by: Xu Penghang