February 12, 2020
Since 1998, USCET has had many talented young people walk through its doors. These people have contributed to the promotion of US-China relations while as an integral part of USCET, as a participant of our programs, and as future leaders in the promotion of US-China relations. This series will tell the stories of these alumni and their impact on fostering better bilateral relations.
The first alumnus that we will be highlighting in this series in Song Yi. Today, Song Yi is a lawyer in Washington, DC and a columnist for Legal Weekly, a legal newspaper in China. Back in 2007, Song Yi first came to Washington as an intern at USCET where she had the opportunity to get involved with projects hands on.
Song Yi conducted research about the teaching of American Studies in China and Chinese Studies in the US, with the opportunity to compose several reports presenting her research. “The USCET team and Ambassador Bloch herself served as excellent mentors to me.” The American Studies Network is a cornerstone of USCET programming, having been established in 2004, and facilitating exchanges between the US and China. Today, USCET’s American Studies Network boasts 54 members across China with an annual conference held each year.
After interning at USCET, Song Yi attended Georgetown University Law Center and practiced law across the United States. Her passion and interest for US-China relations has not waned and she uses writing as a creative outlet to explore bilateral relations. Through her column in Legal Weekly, Song Yi writes about American legal cases for a Chinese audience lending her insight on how the American justice system functions. “I began writing for Legal Weekly in 2012 primarily as a means for processing the bombardment of information I receive daily.”
Song Yi’s articles are not a one-way form of communication, but rather a cross-cultural dialogue as she receives messages from Chinese readers. “Readers connect well with the stories, such as when I covered a legal case involving the producers of children’s Motrin. A young woman suffered severe medical side effects causing her to be disabled from childhood, and this caused many Chinese readers to reach out to my editor sharing stories of their own children and the side effects they have faced from taking similar medicines. If anything, that article showed readers that they were not alone in facing illness or side effects caused by medications.”
US-China relations today are reaching a critical point, however Song Yi remains optimistic. “The many challenges in US-China relations also equal many opportunities for young people who want to get involved. People to people exchanges, such as those offered by USCET, continue to remain important and contribute to the improvement of relations.”
中美教育基金会校友访谈系列 —— 宋一
今天的中美关系已达到临界点，但宋一仍然乐观。她称： “中美关系中的诸多挑战也为想要参与其中的年轻人带来了许多机会。 中美教育基金会提供的人与人之间的交流机会倍加重要，为改善缓解双边关系起到了重要作用。”