Middlebury School in China: Kunming

Middlebury College & CET

The Middlebury School in China sets the bar for Chinese language learning. Whether you choose an MiC program in Beijing, Kunming, or Hangzhou, you get the best of the best—Middlebury’s excellence in language teaching, and CET’s 30+ years of experience in China. You’ll apply through Middlebury and receive a transcript from Middlebury, but the program is open to students from all schools.

Local Roommates

Living with a local roommate is about more than just sharing a room. Your roommate can show you where to get the best mixian (rice noodles), the quickest way to get to Xi Shan for a hike, how to use Chinese social media. And since roommates uphold the same language pledge that you do, you can be sure that it won’t be long before Chinese slang is rolling off your tongue.

Rejuvenate in Kunming

Himalayas to the west. Tropical rainforests to the south. This is China like you’ve never imagined it before. Kunming, the “City of Eternal Spring,” is perfect for nature-lovers and travelers seeking cultural (and culinary!) diversity. A semester in Kunming will transform your Chinese, but it will also prepare you for China’s large international cities…when you’re ready for them.
arrival date
departure date
program length
recommended credits
application deadline
Spring 02/13/2019 06/02/2019 16 Weeks 16 4 Semesters of Chinese October 1
Fall 08/28/2019 12/15/2019 16 Weeks 16 4 Semesters of Chinese March 15
Academic Year 08/28/2019 TBA 32 Weeks 32 4 Semesters of Chinese March 15

Begin Your Experience AbroadApply at Middlebury.edu

Living in Kunming

Spend the morning strolling through the old streets of Kunming. Plan a lake-side barbecue with friends. Dive into the local coffee culture. Get on your bike and explore a nearby village or sip tea at the Bamboo Temple. Join a soccer team or chess club. Do as the locals do and get your exercise around Cui Hu in the early mornings. There are plenty of things to do in Kunming (and most are outside).

Yunnan University

The program is based at Yunnan University. YU’s lovely campus has everything you need—a library, sports facilities, stores, cafés. The campus is also a public transportation hub, making it easy to explore downtown Kunming and beautiful Yunnan Province.

Housing & Meals

You’ll share a room and private bathroom with a local roommate in YU’s international student dormitory. For meals, try the YU cafeteria, or take your pick of nearby restaurants.

Add Winter Term to your Semester in ChinaLearn More at middlebury.edu

Chinese and the City

You’ll take a Yunnan Impressions class that focuses on the province you call home for the semester. Some assignments have you reading about the region, and others get you out the door exploring it. Visit a traditional Chinese medicine clinic and get a firsthand look at alternative treatments. Learn to make a proper cup of Chinese tea. It won’t be long before you are a local expert, with the language skills to prove it.

One-on-One Tutorial

You tell us about what in China interests you, and we create a one-on-one Chinese language class about that topic. Be creative with your one-on-one! This is your chance to get a head start on senior thesis research, or simply learn the kind of Chinese that appeals to you.

Some Possible One-on-One Topics

Sino-US Relationship in Climate Change
Chinese Women Writers of the 1930s
The Chinese Anti-Japanese War Memory
China’s Floating Population
Gender Studies in China
Challenges on the Road to China’s Urbanization
Traditional Chinese Medicine
Educational Equity for Chinese Ethnic Minorities

Begin Your Experience AbroadApply at Middlebury.edu

Start to Specialize

At your level, it’s time to give your Chinese the specialized attention it needs. You’ll choose two electives. Classes are small, so you’ll have plenty of individual attention from the instructor as you steer your Chinese in a specific direction: anthropology, business, environmental studies, newspaper reading, Classical Chinese, social issues.

Total Chinese Immersion

As if taking an intensive load of Chinese classes weren’t enough, you’ll also uphold the 24/7 Middlebury Language Pledge. There’s no denying that the Pledge is challenging. But you won’t be in it alone. Students in this program are known for taking the Pledge seriously as a group. (And they are rewarded for their efforts at the end of the semester with excellent Chinese.) And remember, Chinese is not just for getting homework done. You’ll also have the chance to unwind in Chinese with weekly activities and co-curricular classes—try your hand at archery, go birding with YU’s most prominent environmental student organization, or learn calligraphy.

Explore Rural Yunnan Province

Spend five days in Xizhou, Dali—a small village in a Bai minority autonomous prefecture—pursuing research topics independently and exploring Yunnan’s rural side with your peers and Chinese roommates.  Stay in a traditional merchant mansion with a history linked to the Ancient Tea Horse Road. Explore Benzhu temples. Learn to cook local dishes with ingredients from the morning market. Transcribe wall propaganda. Tackle environmental issues and learning with your classmates and Chinese roommates. Not only do you develop your language skills as you chat with locals, but you also gain a more comprehensive understanding of life and culture in China.