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WINDHOEK (Xinhua) -- Zhang Fan (1st R), director of Confucius Institute in the University of Namibia (UNAM), introduces Chinese lessons at an expo of career planning in UNAM in Windhoek, Namibia, on July 28, 2017. UNAM Confucius Institute was set up in 2013, it has 11 Chinese teaching sites in the country, and has taught 1,842 students by now. XINHUA/CHEN NAN
Namibian students embrace Chinese language to boost prospects

WINDHOEK (Xinhua) -- Students at the University of Namibia Confucius Institute are embracing Chinese language training to seize opportunities and boost career prospects.

Keith Mushonga, 26, a student at the Confucius Institute said that enrolling for Chinese language classes has not only exposed him to a new world of enhanced interaction with the Chinese community but it has reaped him benefits and accolades.

Only a year at the Institute, learning Chinese language accorded him the chance to travel to China to participate at the 16th Chinese Bridge competition.

“In a short period of time, my mastery of the Chinese language came with many opportunities. I never imagined such an opportunity would land on my lap,” said Mushonga.

He added that winning the competition on merit ignited passion and keen interest about the Chinese culture.

According to Mushonga, his participation at the 16th Chinese Bridge competition in China held in July this year has also since enthused him to master the Chinese language to boost his career prospects.

“Being in China gave me a boost of confidence. I learned that it’s about never giving up. Hence, I wish to master the language and seize new opportunities that comes with learning the Chinese language,” he said.

During the trip to China, Mushonga also immersed himself in the Chinese culture by visiting the China University of Geosciences in Beijing, climbed the Great Wall and also visited the Forbidden City.

According to Mushonga, exposure to multiple facets in China accorded him the chance to learn more about the Chinese culture, account and their way of socialization.

“This gave me insight into the history of China and realized how far the Chinese community has come. Emulating from their spirit of hard work and development; I was inspired to come back and transform my country. Indeed as a country, we can learn a lot from their history and look for opportunities to enhance development in Africa,” he added.

In the interim, Mushonga said he plans to master the Chinese language as he hopes to pursue further studies in linguistics in China next year.

“In addition, I wish to share with my Namibian counterparts about the Chinese culture and what we can learn from their exemplary work,” he said.

Meanwhile, Zhang Fan, Director of the Confucius Institute said that interest in the Chinese language amongst Namibians has increased, with the Institute enrolling more than 700 students countrywide.

The Confucius Institute offers scholarships, summer camps, Chinese-bridge proficiency competition and other programs for senior officials and principals to visit China.

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