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In September 2022, we were delighted to welcome students, faculty, and friends to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Carolina Asia Center. Not only did we get a chance to look back over everything the CAC has accomplished in our first two decades, but we looked forward to the future of studying Asia at UNC and training students to be leaders in our future relationships with Asia. This has made us more convinced than ever of the vital need for the Carolina Asia Center on our campus and in our state. 

The Carolina Asia Center works on so many fronts to promote the study of Asia. 

  • We provide scholarships to students—not just through the flagship Phillips Ambassadors program but also through the FLAS fellowships and the Mahatma Gandhi Fellowships. This year, we are again sending students to a wide range of destinations in Asia, including an undergraduate student who received a Mahatma Gandhi Fellowship to intern in an eye hospital in Odisha, India, last summer. 
  • We facilitate faculty research, like the workshop we held in December 2022 on ancient Chinese manuscripts. 
  • We support classes, like the re-launch of “Modern Southeast Asia” in the History Department or the addition of new course offerings in Vietnamese and Urdu. 
  • We bring outstanding speakers to campus, on subjects ranging from political legitimacy in Hong Kong to Asian American poetry in North Carolina. 
  • We offer professional networking for students considering global careers after Carolina.  
  • We run cultural events, like Korean film screenings and Japanese tea ceremonies. 
  • We train K-12 teachers across North Carolina so they can teach students around the state about Asia, like the seminar we hosted over the summer about “Contested Territory in Vietnam.” 

While our work is award-winning—including major grants from the US Department of Education, the STARTALK program, and the Luce foundation in the last year—so much of it could not happen without your support. 

In this season of giving, we invite you to make a gift to support the work of the Carolina Asia Center. As you reflect on the last year, we are always looking for input from our campus and community partners, and we welcome you to write to us at In 2023, we encourage you to join us for a lecture or come to a cultural event. Looking forward to the next twenty years of the CAC, we hope you will continue to partner with us to build UNC’s strength in the interdisciplinary study of Asia and to increase understanding of Asia throughout North Carolina. 

With best wishes for the holidays, 

CAC Staff 

PS – In the coming months, make sure you catch our conference on “Indonesia in International Relations,” the UNC Phillips Summer in Taiwan study abroad program, and outreach programs to community college students and educators throughout the US Southeast—among many other initiatives! 


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