China Daily (Canada) - - PEOPLE -

study­ing at the Chi­nese de­part­ment of the Uni­ver­sity of Khar­toum in Su­dan

in China.

In 2008, he passed the nec­es­sary Chi­nese-lan­guage level tests and got a schol­ar­ship from the Chi­nese govern­ment to get his master’s de­gree in teach­ing Chi­nese as a sec­ond lan­guage at North­west Nor­mal Uni­ver­sity in Lanzhou, cap­i­tal of Gansu prov­ince.

He stayed in China for four years, which he says made him more Chi­nese. He is well­versed in us­ing such tools as the Baidu search en­gine and lis­ten­ing to mu­sic with Chi­nese apps like QQ mu­sic and Youku video. He is also good at WeChat, a Chi­nese in­stant com­mu­ni­ca­tion net­work­ing app and shares reg­u­lar updates over it.

Af­ter grad­u­a­tion, he re­turned to his alma mater in Su­dan as a Chi­nese teacher.

Ab­dalla has been put­ting on open days at the de­part­ment, at which stu­dents and fac­ulty vol­un­teers in­tro­duce China to the pub­lic, its his­tory, lit­er­a­ture and food.

“Each time, the event is packed with crowds, in­clud­ing some lo­cal govern­ment of­fi­cials,” he adds.

Work­ing with the cul­tural of­fice of the Chi­nese em­bassy in Su­dan and the Con­fu­cius In­sti­tute at the Uni­ver­sity of Khar­toum, the col­lege also runs the Chi­nese bridge card game con­tests and Chi­nese cul­ture fes­ti­vals.

Ab­dalla sees the lan­guage as a bridge to an­other cul­ture. “In the past, we were lim­ited to in­for­ma­tion in the English­language me­dia. Now with the lan­guage we can get to know the coun­try on our own,” he says. “I also want to start a col­umn in the lo­cal news­pa­per to cover China, which now sel­dom makes head­lines in lo­cal me­dia.”

Ab­dalla ap­plied this year for a chance to re­turn to China to fur­ther his Chi­nese stud­ies through a doc­toral de­gree.

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Al­badawe Ab­dalla says liv­ing in China for four years made him more Chi­nese.

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