Confucius Institute at San Francisco State University

2017 “Chinese Bridge” Competition – SF Regional Preliminary Contest
Recommending Top Winners to Hanban for Final Contest in China

May 14, 2017

On May 14, 2017, Consulate General of the P.R. China in San Francisco hosted 2017 “Chinese Bridge” – Chinese Proficiency Competition for College / High School Students – SF Regional Contest. 10 college students and 7 high school students recommended by 6 Confucius Institutes from Northern California, Alaska, Oregon, and Washington participated in this event.

Confucius Institute at San Francisco State University (CI at SF State), the first home to the Confucius Institute in the west coast, recommended two college students and two high school students to compete with other contestants from other fellow Confucius Institutes. Jay Gonzales and Seonghyeon Kim, two college students, were recognized as First Place winners. Two high school contestants were also top winners in their group, Cayleigh Capaldi as First Place and Kaylee Doty as Second Place winners.

1. Welcome Remarks by Education Counselor Jun Yang, Chinese Consulate in SF

This annual preliminary contest, participated by two groups of contestants, one for college students, and the other for high school students, is specially designed in three sections: (1) Chinese Proficiency – Mandarin Speech, (2) Knowledge about China - Q&As, and (3) Chinese Culture Skills - Cultural Talent Show. As usual, it is a very competitive competition among contestants from Alaska, Northern California, Oregon and Washington. After three rounds, the host will recommend the champion of each group to represent the Confucius Institutes in U.S. northwestern states to go to China for the Semi-Final and Final Competition in July, 2017, competing with 140 top winners from other regional contests in the world.

2. Jay Gonzalez, 1st Place Winner of College Students Group, telling his stories in China

This year, CI at SF State recommended Jay Gonzalez from Stanford University and Seonghyeon Kim from Pacific University to take part in the preliminary contest hosted by Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in San Francisco. In April 2017, they were recognized as two top winners of the Northern California Preliminary Contest held by CI at SF State. After extremely fierce competition for a whole day on May 14, both Jay Gonzalez and Seonghyeon Kim won the first prize. In the speech contest section, on the topic of “Dream Enlightening the Future”, Jay Gonzalez shared his story about his working experience in Shanghai, during which he was well taken by Chinese people, being treated as a family member; while Seonghyeon Kim shared his experience as a volunteer teacher of computer and English for primary school students every summer in the rural areas of Yunnan Province, China. They also demonstrated their talents about Chinese culture by presenting Tibetan dance with characteristics of Zumba and performing hulusi, a traditional musical instrument of Dai nationality, which impressed all the judges, participating students and parents. Two winners will be recommended to Hanban for the Semi-final and Final Competition in China this summer sponsored by Hanban, Jay as a contestant, Seonghyeon as a guest to observe the whole event.

3. Seonghyeon Kim, 1st Place Winner of College Students Group, sharing his experiences in China

For the group of high school students, CI at SF State recommended Cayleigh Capaldi from Santa Catalina School and Kaylee Dodi from Confucius Classroom at Western Sierra Collegiate Academy. Both of them reached brilliant achievements, Cayleigh Capaldi winning the 1st Prize and Kaylee Dodi winning the 2nd Prize. As the 1st Place Winner, Cayleigh Capaldi will represent the Confucius Institutes in northwestern states to compete with other winners from all over the world in the Semi-final and Final Competition in China in October 2017. At SF Preliminary Contest on May 14, Cayleigh Capaldi shared her experience as a spokesman of Hangzhou in Hangzhou Global Tour 2015 in the section of the Chinese Speech Contest, moving all participants in the competition in San Francisco on Mother’s Day with her emotional song “Where the Time Has Gone”. Kaylee Dodi impressed everyone with her fast reaction in the section of Q&As about China and her good understanding of knowledge about Chinese characters. She performed beautiful Guzheng in the Talent Show section, leading everyone to the peaceful world of classic Chinese music.

4. Cayleigh Capaldi, 1st Place Winner of 9-12 Group, singing “Where the Time Has Gone”

5. Kaylee Dodi, 2nd Place Winner of 9-12 Group, playing a Chinese instrument - Guzheng

The four top winners recommended by CI at SF State and their parents thanked the Confucius Institute and their home schools for providing them with this great opportunity to stand on this big stage to further improve their language proficiency and showcase their Chinese cultural skills. The top winners and all participating students from Alaska, Oregon, Washington and Northern California inspired Chinese language teachers and educators. We, at all Confucius Institutes and universities/schools in the region, will jointly work together to serve all students with more and better programs while congratulating those outstanding students. We believe they will live up to our expectations, facing future challenge with more confidence and stronger bilingual capabilities!

6. Celebrating 2017 Chinese Bridge Competition – SF Regional Contest