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The Carolina Asia Center’s China Initiative was born out of UNC-Chapel Hill’s expanding focus on Chinese language and area studies. Over the past decade, the University has strategically connected with Chinese universities, researchers, students, and alumni through engaged partnerships, exchange opportunities and academic programs. Additionally, Carolina has cultivated networks of alumni and colleagues living in China.

These developments have been made possible by a growing interest in China among UNC-Chapel Hill students, faculty and alumni. The Grier/Woods Presbyterian China Initiative, established with a gift from an alumna in 2004, provides faculty research fellowships and travel awards to China and supports students who study abroad in China. The Phillips Ambassadors program, established with a gift from an alumnus in 2006, provides scholarships for students to participate in study abroad programs in Asia, especially China and India. In the spring of 2002, the Freeman Foundation awarded $2 million over four years to create new faculty positions in the Department of Asian Studies, promote study abroad opportunities in China for undergraduate students and establish the Carolina Asia Center itself. Today, we continue to uphold our tradition of engagement with China through our China Initiative.


The China Initiative encompasses many important partnerships with Chinese universities and other institutions. These connections encompass a wide scope of disciplines, including the social sciences, business, logistics, linguistics, education, health sciences, biology and biomedicine. They also offer opportunities for student and faculty networking, shared institutional resources and collaborative scholarship.

UNC’s partnerships with universities in China include:

UNC has also developed bilateral relations with schools, departments, or programs with Chinese universities including:

  • Beijing Sports University, Beijing
  • China Europe International Business School, Shanghai
  • China Foreign Affairs University, Beijing
  • Chinese Academy of Social Science, Beijing
  • East China University of Science and Technology, Shanghai
  • Fudan University, Shanghai
  • Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong
  • Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong
  • Jilin University, Changchun
  • Sichuan University, Chengdu
  • Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou
  • Yunnan University, Kunming

Additionally, the UNC School of Education has developed a partnership with a K-12 school in China:

  • Beijing Royal School, Beijing
 As the China Initiative continues to grow, we anticipate partnering with even more institutions and developing even stronger programs. Check back periodically for new developments.