20 November 2019
By Bryan Smyth
Cork County Council, in conjunction with Cork Education and Training Board (Cork ETB), Nanjing Municipal Education Bureau, and Jiangsu Foreign Affairs Office are honoured to introduce the 2020 Méihuā Cup Chinese Learning Competition for Cork students.
The competition, which is open to teams of students from Cork ETB schools, challenges students to engage with and interpret selected Chinese poems about the Méihuā flower, the city flower of Nanjing, capital city of the Chinese Province of Jiangsu. Currently open for entries until Friday, 29th November, the competition will be held in January 2020 in one of Cork’s ETB schools. Admission to the competition will be granted by a selection committee in Nanjing to approximately twenty groups of applications on the principle of first come, first served.
Each team must consist of three students, who will be asked to complete a series of three tasks, including a reading of their chosen poem in Chinese, a reading of the English translation and then to illustrate the implication of the poem through their chosen talent. The Confucius Institute of UCC will be on hand to assist students in preparing for the competition. Two winning groups of three students, together with two teachers will be invited to take part in an eight day study tour programme in Nanjing in April 2020.
This competition builds on the success of the Shamrock Cup English Language Competition, a Cork County Council funded initiative, delivered in collaboration with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade through the Irish Consulate in Shanghai, which has seen groups of winning students from China visit Cork for three consecutive years.
Cork County Council first established friendship with the region in 2013 and went on to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with Jiangsu Province in 2016 to promote economic development, trade, tourism and arts and cultural exchanges for the mutual benefit of the citizens of both regions. An official agreement of friendship was subsequently signed in 2017.
Mayor of the County of Cork Cllr. Christopher O’Sullivan said:
“I’m delighted to see Cork County Council developing this wonderful experience for young people in Cork. This will be a fantastic learning opportunity for Cork students to expand their knowledge of Chinese language and culture. I am sure this competition will also serve to further strengthen the relationship between Jiangsu and Cork County, in respect of our shared heritage of excellence in education.”
Chief Executive of Cork County Council Tim Lucey added:
“Strengthening ties between Cork County and the wider world is vital to securing our long term success. The Méihuā Cup Competition provides a valuable opportunity for young people while strengthening ties between educational institutions in both Cork and Jiangsu. This will yield benefits in education, research and culture going forward.”