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Programs : Brochure

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  • Locations: Kunming, China
  • Program Terms: Academic Year, Fall, Spring
  • Homepage: Click to visit
  • Program Sponsor: Middlebury Schools Abroad 
  • Restrictions: Pomona applicants only
  • Dates / Deadlines
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Language of instruction: Chinese Housing options: Residence Hall
Areas of study: Anthropology, Art History, Asian Studies, Chinese, Environmental Studies, History, Religious Studies, Sociology Language GPA: 3.0
Program type: Stand alone Language level: Chinese 51b or the equivalent
GPA: 2.7 GPA in major: 3.0
Program Description:
China Banner

Living with a Chinese roommate—in a pairing based on interests and preferences—is one benefit shared by all School in China students, whether in Hangzhou, Kunming, or Beijing. Challenging course work and the Language Pledge round out a highly immersive program for the serious student of Mandarin Chinese.

Located in Southwest China and close to several countries in Southeast Asia, Kunming is known as the "City of Eternal Spring".

Kunming's parks--combined with the temperate climate of Southeast Asia--make it a very livable city with a strong "outdoor" culture.  Kunming is very multicultural, clearly demonstrating the influences of the 26 different ethnic groups living in Yunnan Province. 

Academic Program
Students enroll in four courses: One-on-One Tutorial (1 Pomona credit), Kunming Impressions (1 Pomona credit), and two electives (1 Pomona credit each). Middlebury may require some students to enroll in Developing Chinese Fluency, depending on their language level. Courses are conducted entirely in Chinese and meet for 16 hours per week. Elective courses will be offered based on enrollment, with a minimum of 3 students and a maximum of 8 students.
Yunnan Traveling Seminar
Each semester, the program takes students on an extended excursion in rural Yunnan to pursue independent research topics and experience hands-on learning. One of the areas that students have previously gone to is Dali, a Bai minority autonomous prefecture nestled between one of Yunnan’s largest natural lakes and the 4000+ meter Cangshan mountain range. In Dali, students have stayed in the historic Bai village of Xizhou and resided in a traditional merchant mansion that was historically linked to the Ancient Tea Horse Road. Students spent five full days getting to know this fascinating Bai village by exploring the Benzhu temples, seeking out local artisans, cooking local dishes from ingredients purchased at the morning market, transcribing wall propaganda, exploring environmental issues, and learning together with their classmates and Chinese roommates. Each semester’s destination for the excursion will be announced during the program orientation.

Living Arrangements
Students live in double room dormitories with a Chinese roommate from the host university. Meals are not included in the program fee, however campus cafeterias offer three meals per day at reasonable prices. Pomona provides a meal allowance. 

Number of Students
Middlebury enrolls up to 25 students, selected from a national pool.

Host Institutions
Middlebury Schools Abroad
Yunnan University (YNU)

Faculty Liaison
Sharon Hou

  • The equivalent of four college semesters of Chinese language instruction (51b), five semesters (111a) preferred.
  • Students must have achieved an average of B or better in their major and language courses, and an overall average of B- or better.
Students are expected to complete a Chinese language course the semester prior to the term abroad.

Travel Advisories

Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline (Pacific Time) Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring 2024 09/17/2023 10/13/2023 TBA TBA