Standing Out from the Crowd in a Global World with Language Proficiency

Posted January 18, 2018

Chinese is the fastest growing language studied in North Carolina, increasing from 350 to over 12,000 K-12 students studying Chinese language since 2010, primarily driven by Go Global NC’s Confucius Classroom network.* The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction reports Chinese is the third most studied foreign language in the state.

photo of flyer for Chinese language testing at Wheatmore High School

Photo: Wheatmore High School

Learning and showing proficiency in more than one language provides an opportunity for students to stand out from the crowd in a global world where employers and educational institutions pay attention to language skills when recruiting. Job postings seeking bilingual employees more than doubled between 2010 and 2015, and Chinese language proficiency was one of the top three languages sought**

Go Global NC’s June Chen – associate director, world language programs – with the support of Rachel Rosenbaum – program coordinator, education and training – and in collaboration with Hanban (the Office of Chinese Language Council International), help North Carolina students recognize their proficiency in Chinese language by offering two specialized tests launched by Hanban: HSK (Hànyŭ Shuĭpíng Kăoshì) Chinese Proficiency Test and YCT (Youth Chinese Test).

picture of Chinese teacher in the classroom

Photo: Polk High School

Both tests help non-native Chinese speakers see their progress in learning Chinese language and gauge their ability to use their language skills in their daily, academic, or professional lives. Official HSK credentials for Chinese language ability may help secure employment or help students test out of college courses. The YCT is also an international standardized test of Chinese language proficiency but is designed for primary and middle school and measures proficiency at a lower level than HSK. As students continue to study Chinese, they may measure their proficiency by taking the HSK.

Go Global NC has successfully administered nearly 600 HSK/YCT tests to students in its Confucius Classroom network in the past two years, with plans to increase the number of students taking this proficiency exam in the future.

*Go Global NC data
**2017 New American Economy report: “Not Lost in Translation: The Growing Importance of Foreign Language Skills in the U.S. Job Market”

Go Global NC Learns Best Practices at “2017 Chinese Bridge Delegation”

Posted January 18, 2018

delegates from 2017 Hanban bridge delegation

2017 Bridge Delegation (Source:

Go Global NC supported a delegation of North Carolina educational leaders who were invited to China from November 3-11 to attend the “2017 Chinese Bridge Delegation,” an event designed to help American and Chinese educators “create a bridge” to gain a deeper understanding of Chinese language, culture, and education. The annual gathering is sponsored by Hanban (the Office of Chinese Language Council International) in partnership with the College Board, a U.S. mission-driven nonprofit organization that connects students to college success and opportunity.

During their visit to Sichuan province, China, Go Global NC representatives Tom Martineau – associate director, education and training – and Rachel Rosenbaum – program coordinator, education and training – were among nearly 200 educational administrators and principals representing 28 United States and the District of Columbia. They were welcomed with a ceremony in Beijing followed by presentations from well-known scholars about best practices and resources to build and support Chinese language and culture programs in the classroom. Attendees visited Chinese K–12 schools and universities in different provinces, met with Chinese educators and observed classes to establish partnerships with Chinese schools and network with colleagues. They also experienced the sights of China firsthand, with a focus on the contrast between its rich traditional culture and modern development.

The North Carolina delegation was also hosted by the Sichuan Department of Education in Sichuan province, where they visited schools in and around the provincial capital of Chengdu, creating the potential for new programs.

Click below to see a short video of activities Rachel captured while at the Bridge Delegation.

Global Teachers Germany 2017: Day Nine

Orientation | Day One | Day Two | Day Three | Day Four | Day Five | Day Six | Day Seven | Day Eight | Day Nine | Follow-Up

Day Nine

On the final full day in Germany, the delegation did independent field study and Challenge by Choice activities. For some participants, they saw Munich the way many do: by bike.

Some teachers explored the city by tram or subway.

Other participants saw the city by foot.

And others took in the city’s finery.

All in all, according to the delegation, the program achieved what it set out to: a new understanding of the global educational community and renewable energy.

Global Teachers Germany 2017: Day Four

Orientation | Day One | Day Two | Day Three | Day Four | Day Five | Day Six | Day Seven | Day Eight | Day Nine | Follow-Up

Day Four

Leaving Berlin behind, the Global Teachers delegation traveled southwest to Stuttgart, the state capital of Baden-Württemberg. 2015 statistics indicate that 40% of Stuttgart’s residents are immigrants from outside of Germany and 20,000 new immigrants arrive each year. Levant Gunes, a city planning office employee and teacher at Stuttgart University, told the New York Times that “the percentage of entrepreneurs in Stuttgart with migrants backgrounds is the highest in Germany.”

Up first: the teachers were invited to join Baden-Württemberg International for lunch. The company is focused on serving as a central point-of-contact for companies and institutions who look to become more global. They then participated in a discussion of the school system and Germany’s education model with representatives of the Ministry of Education; the Ministry of REsearch, Science, and the Arts; the Ludwisgburg University of Education; as well as the Seminar for Teacher Education, Tübingen.

Lee Quinn from Broughton High School reflected on what the teachers learned during their presentations on the education system.

To put it mildly, teacher training between our two states has some outstanding contrasts. The fact that, in order to become a teacher in Baden-Württemberg, a prospective educator must complete bachelors and masters degrees before entering into an intensive 18-month period of apprenticeship — which has its own stringent standards of consistent performance — indicates the seriousness with which teacher training is approached here. This seriousness reveals a deeper value placed on the teaching profession in Baden-Württemberg, both socially and politically, as a critical investment in the long-term well-being of this state. Read more.

The group then took a short stroll in Stuttgart’s city center on their way to the Mercedes-Benz museum, where they found a connection to North Carolina.

Anthony Johnson not only produced a Day 4 video, but also expanded his reflections of the program so far.

Go Global NC (Johnsonville World Tour) Day 4 from Anthony Johnson on Vimeo.