Univ. to participate in national event

Paige Bailey

The University will be a part of a national China Town Hall event featuring a webcast with U.S. Ambassador to China, Gary Locke, on Oct. 29. Just one week before the presidential election, members of the University will be able to engage in a discourse regarding United States-China relations with both Locke and a leading China expert, Bonnie Glaser.

The China town hall will begin at 6:45 p.m. in the Terrace Room with Glaser’s talk, “U.S. Strategic Rebalancing toward Asia and Its Impact on US-China Relations.” Glaser is a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies as well as a member on the Council on Foreign Relations. She specializes in issues of defense and international security in China, East Asia and the Pacific and Korea. Her writings have been published in an array of academic journals and newspapers.

The National Committee on United States-China Relations (NCUSCR) relations is the oldest American organization focused on the promotion of strong, friendly relations between the two countries. Zhiqun Zhu, associate professor of political science and international relations and MacArthur Chair in East Asian Politics, said the NCUSR sponsors these webcasts primarily to “ … remind Americans that a strong and cooperative US-China relationship serves the best interests of the two countries.”

After Glaser’s talk there will be a webcast led by Locke, who was a two-term governor of Washington and the U.S. Secretary of Commerce prior to his confirmation as Ambassador to China. He is also the first person of Chinese descent to be the Ambassador to China.

Zhu also said that students should be excited about this forum because, for the first time, “Bucknell will be joining some 50 other locations across the country to host this important event just one week before the U.S. presidential election.”

Zhu believes that the way that the event is set up facilitates dialogue about “China-related issues” between citizens and policy experts and senior officials.

“It’s a tribute to the stature of Zhu that he has been able to bring together the participants in this event,” said Pete Mackey, vice president for communications and community relations.

Mackey also said that this forum is representative of the “vibrant intellectual and cultural dialogue that Bucknell encourages on campus and beyond.”

Alexis Birnberg, a senior Management major with an East Asian Studies minor echoes Professor Zhu’s enthusiasm. “There have been various discussions in U.S. politics, most recently within the presidential election, debating future affairs with China. Attending this event will introduce people of all majors to both the costs and benefits of Chinese relations, adding substance to the debates you may see on TV regarding this topic. China’s booming economy has also played a large role in the United States economic prosperity. There are various facets of China that could affect the future of the U.S. – [everyone] should want to be informed of this relationship, ” said Birnberg.

The China Town Hall is sponsored by the MacArthur Chair in East Asian Politics, the Departments of Political Science, International Relations and East Asian studies and Communications and Events Management offices and the National Committee on United States-China Relations.

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