During Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s opening remarks of the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue on May 9, 2011, she described the importance of the relationship between the United States and China in this way:
“Our work really begins with our commitment to better understanding one another, to building trust between each other, and to working to avoid misunderstanding and miscalculation. We all know that fears and misperceptions linger on both sides of the Pacific. I will be very open about that. Some in our country see China’s progress as a threat to the United States. Some in China worry that America seeks to constrain China’s growth. We reject both those views…. China and the United States face a wide range of common regional and global challenges. How our two countries work together to meet those challenges will help define the trajectory, not only of our relationship going forward, but the future peace, prosperity, and progress of the world.”
Her remarks echo the statement by C.H. Tung, vice-chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Committee and former chief executive of Hong Kong, in April 2009 when announcing his family’s gift to help Semester at Sea establish the C.Y. Tung Program in Sino-U.S. Relations in honor of his father:
“The relationship between China and the United States is one of the most important bilateral relationships facing the world today. A stable, mature China-U.S. relationship will benefit not only people on both sides of the Pacific but will have a positive impact on the world as well. Nearly four decades ago, my late father founded the program to promote cross-country, cross-cultural education. Today, I am glad to see that the C.Y. Tung Program in Sino-U.S. Relations will take shipboard education a step further to bring students and scholars of the two countries closer.”
In addition to the Sino-U.S. relations focus as part of the academic program on Semester at Sea voyages, the Institute for Shipboard Education will also explore Sino-U.S. Relations during the 2011 Forum on Global Engagement voyage.
The Forum on Global Engagement is an invitation-only event for alumni, volunteers, and supporters of Semester at Sea. The Forum on Global Engagement inspires dialogue and understanding among its participants by exploring the global issues of today from various perspectives including historical, political, economic, and social. Previous Forums on Global Engagement have featured Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Sandra Day O’Connor, Julian Bond, and Governor Gerald Baliles.
The program for the 2011 Forum on Global Education—Diplomacy and Dialogue: A Focus on Sino-U.S. Relations—will feature the following speakers:
- Co-Founder of DHL International Chung Po Yang (SAS Alumnus, Fall 1963)
- American Council on Education President Molly Corbett Broad
- Boeing Chairman, President, and CEO Jim McNerney
- Co-Founder of Chinaccelerator Sean O’Sullivan (SAS Alumnus, Spring 1998)
- Former U.S. Ambassador to China J. Stapleton Roy