Students Finding Common Ground: US-China Collaborative Projects in an Era of Strategic Competition

Who: This program is open to all undergraduate or graduate students studying in the US who have a demonstrated interest in US-China relations and a willingness to work together with students from Tsinghua University on a guided cooperative project. It is sponsored by the US-China Education Trust (USCET), a DC-based NGO with an office in the Elliott School, 605G. 

When: Spring Semester 2024

What: The US-China Education Trust will bring students, faculty mentors, and advisors from American universities and Beijing’s Tsinghua University together in small groups of 8-10 students from both schools. They will work together to develop a Common Ground project proposal and complete the final project in a chosen field. Projects may focus on education, energy, environment, food security, public health, agriculture or another chosen area where cooperation can thrive in an era of competition and tension between the two countries.

Each student group will complete a project that develops details of a collaborative US-China project in the chosen field. The project can take the form of a briefing paper, PowerPoint presentation, or multimedia presentation. 

Students must be willing to attend approximately 5-6 group meetings throughout the spring 2024 semester with fellow students as well as GW and Tsinghua faculty mentors and advisors (approximately two hours each). Professors or small group advisors may also suggest a small amount of project-related reading material. While there is no academic credit for this project, worthy final projects may be presented virtually at USCET’s American Studies Network conference in China in fall 2024 and/or published on the USCET website.

Where: All Common Ground project sessions, meetings, and related work will be hosted virtually.  Local group members may opt to meet in person between full group sessions.  All project discussions and the final project will be done in English.

How to Apply: There is a selective application process. Interested students should fill out the Google Form, linked to the “Apply Here” button below. If you have any questions, please contact USCET Program Manager, Melynn Oliver, at

Deadline: December 4, 2023, 11:59pm ET