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‘My Summer in China’: COCC to offer free Chinese language youth day camp

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Applications are now being accepted for Central Oregon Community College’s inaugural “My Summer in China” Chinese language day camp, a free youth program funded by the prestigious National Security Agency’s STARTALK grant.

COCC is one of only a few community colleges nationwide to be awarded the STARTALK grant this cycle. COCC will offer “My Summer in China” to Central Oregon students in grades 7 to 12, including those who home-school. Space is limited and the application deadline is March 15. Visit for complete details.

The innovative curriculum will create the feeling of being an exchange student in China, offering immersive and interactive experiences with local Chinese families and a simulated Chinese night market, in addition to language instruction. The program is intended to serve both Chinese-heritage and non-heritage students with little to no previous Chinese language knowledge.

“By the end, students will be at mid-novice to high-novice proficiency and will have a deeper understanding of Chinese culture,” said Lin Hong, COCC world languages instructor and program director of “My Summer in China.”

The camps are offered as two, two-week sessions in July (July 3-14, with July 4 off, and July 17-28), and involve an additional 45 hours of free online instruction, prior to and following the camp, to prepare students and reinforce learning. College credit is available to high school students who take both sessions and complete all online instruction.

Students enrolled in grades 7 to 12 as of September 2023 are eligible to apply; priority will be given to students who can attend all sessions (including the pre- and post-camp online learning), as well as to low-income, ethnic minority and rural students.

For college students, COCC also offers a range of Chinese coursework, and for community members, the community education department routinely offers noncredit classes in language training.

For more information on “My Summer in China”: or

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