East meets West. The Tsinghua project.
There has been a cooperation treaty for a linguistic and artistic partnership programme between Folkwang University of the Arts and Tsinghua University Beijing, China since 2009.
The partnership programme schedules a two-part course of studies for Chinese students applying for the design and music study programmes in Germany. First, the students participating in the programme will master the subject-specific, theoretic and linguistic basics required for their artistic study programme by taking an almost one-year long preparation course at Folkwang University of the Arts. After having successfully passed the qualifying examination – at Folkwang University of the Arts or another German art college – and the language test, the students are welcome to enroll for a study programme.
The Tsinghua partnership programme is directed at attracting Chinese students with excellent artistic skills for studying at Folkwang University of the Arts.
The whole partnership programme is controlled by Folkwang University of the Arts, head of operations being the university chancellor Michael Fricke.
The partnership programme begins with welcoming the students at the airport. Folkwang University of the Arts makes sure that the students are picked up at the airport and then brought to their lodgings.
During the first days, the participants are accompanied by Chinese-speaking tutors, who help them along with bureaucratic issues: opening of the first checking account, taking out health insurance, enrolling at the university, registering with the city’s Aliens Authority etc.
Furthermore, the students participating in the programme will be assigned a competent team at Folkwang University of the Arts for the whole duration of the programme. Project manager Karoline Spelsberg personally ensures the students‘ mentoring as well as the didactic conception of the language courses and the implementation of the subject-specific preparation courses in design and music.
The programme coordinator offers support when it comes to coordinating the communication between the programme members and at the same time, acts as contact person for the programme students.Additionally, research assistants working in the departments of music and design can help the students with subject-specific questions. Aside from subject-specific knowledge and language skills, the programme also aims at teaching inter-cultural matters – in the form of experiences outside the classroom.
This is the reason why Folkwang University of the Arts not only organizes artistic excursions, but also those providing insight into geography, history and institutions of the German country.
The Chinese programme partner is Tsinghua University in Beijing, one of the most renowned universities in China. There, Prof. Zhang and the UNESCO Centre are responsible for organizing studying abroad. This centre is where Chinese students interested in the programme should turn to for more information.