Holly Zhao

Class of 2009 - Major in Chinese & International Relations

The Chinese program at UC Davis taught me not only how to read and write Chinese, it inspired me to pursue a Chinese double major and ultimately, helped bring me to China where I have been studying and working for the past two years. Although I took the obligatory Sunday Chinese school lessons growing up, I never felt motivated or inspired to learn more than the 30 characters we had to learn a week. This changed with my first Chinese 1BL course. The content and structure of the courses allowed me to quickly learn hundreds of new characters and unlock a whole world of Chinese articles, movies and culture. My four years of studying the language and in the Chinese program were filled with fascinating history lessons, generations of Chinese film, ancient poetry, and Chinese linguistics. These lessons stay with me today in a practical and personal way. Not only am I a pretty useful person to have around to explain the uses of "ba 吧" in a sentence, I am always able to remember old classes as I walk through the streets of Beijing, helping me understand why something is the way it is and guiding me in my attempt to make sense of the new lessons quickly unfolding before me. So I encourage all of you to join this amazing, in my case, life-changing, program now and start learning more Chinese ba 吧!