South Gate, CA – On Thursday, February 19, 2015, the International Studies Learning Center (ISLC) of the Los Angeles Unified School District, in collaboration with Wanxiang Group, hosted an event to celebrate its 100,000 Strong Foundation study abroad program at a Chinese New Year celebration at the ISLC High School.
In support of President Obama’s 100,000 Strong Initiative, Wanxiang has been sponsoring summer study abroad programs for underrepresented Americans in Hangzhou, China, since 2012. Forty ISLC students were able to study in China in summer 2013 and 2014. At Thursday’s celebration, students used video presentations and traditional Chinese dances to demonstrate what they had learned about Chinese language and culture at the Wanxiang Polytechnic School and the clean energy plant in Hangzhou, China. Following the student presentations, a tree of friendship was planted to symbolize the strong relationship between ISLC and Wanxiang.
The event was hosted and organized by ISLC’s principal, Dr. Guillermina Jauregui. Guests included officials from the Los Angeles Unified School District, the City of South Gate vice mayor and police chief, and the executive directors of both the UCLA Confucius Institute and University of Southern California US-China Institute. On behalf of Wanxiang, Brent Wouters of Fisker Automotive, a subsidiary of Wanxiang that makes luxury plug-in vehicles, addressed the audience and spoke of Wanxiang’s commitment to US-China relations, as well as the importance of intercultural awareness and language learning in his own career. To demonstrate Wanxiang’s commitment to clean energy and to give the students first-hand interaction with clean technology, Mr. Wouters drove a Fisker Karma, the company’s first plug-in vehicle model, inside the school grounds near the tree of friendship.
ISLC has a proud tradition of preparing its students to be global citizens, and promoting cultural exchange, and an exemplary world language program. In February 2012, US Vice President Joe Biden, and then-Chinese Vice President (and current President) Xi Jinping visited ISLC to recognize the school. This celebration was another example of Wanxiang’s commitment to building strong US-China ties, specifically through supporting the 100,000 Strong Initiative.