University of Wisconsin–Madison Chancellor David Ward officially welcomed the 2011 class of the Chinese Champions Program to Camp Randall Stadium during the Badgers football game on Saturday. More than 80,300 Badger fans greeted the Chinese superstars, who represented a combined total of more than 12 Olympic and 30 world championship medals.
A partnership between Beijing Sport University, the China Scholarship Council, and UW–Madison, the Chinese Champions Program demonstrates the tremendous global reach of this great campus. This unique program has elevated the profile of UW-Madison across China.
“Before coming here, we had all heard about American college football, but to be in a sea of 80,000 people wearing red is a once-in-a-lifetime experience!” says Qiu Hongxia, two-time world-record-setting and three-time world champion weightlifter. “I even have a red ‘W’ painted on my face.”
“I was overwhelmed by the passion that Americans show their sports teams, young and old, entire families here come out to enjoy the games!” says Wang Shou, world-champion medalist in taekwondo.
These high-profile Chinese Olympic and World Champion medalists are current graduate students in a master’s program at Beijing Sport University. This cohort includes 16 of China’s leading stars from a variety of sports such as swimming, table tennis, wrestling, freestyle skiing and taekwondo.
Following their 10-month program at UW-Madison and armed with international experience, these outstanding athletes will continue to important roles in the sports infrastructure of China. For more information on the Chinese Champions Program please visit: http://www.chancellor.wisc.edu/china.
The photo above, from on the field at Camp Randall. From the left, Bucky Badger, Chen Delong (wrestling), He Lumin (taekwondo), Shi Xin (synchronized swimming), Liu Yin (curling), UW–Madison Chancellor David Ward, Qiu Hongxia (weightlifting), Tang Jingzhi (swimming), Liu Xia (judo), Wang Shou (taekwondo), Zhou Yafei (swimming), Han Xiaopeng (freestyle skiing – aerials), and Zhong Hongyan (kayak/sprint canoe)