Valley Students Earn Top Honors at Chinese Language Competition

UPDATE from Nov. 6, 2015: Valley senior Elliot Smith and USA Team 2 earned third place in the Chinese Bridge Language and Culture Competition. The team finished first for web voting in North America and sixth in the world. Third prize awards Smith a scholarship to study in China for one semester.

UPDATE from Oct. 22, 2015: Valley senior Elliot Smith has made it through the first round at the Chinese Bridge Language and Culture Competition. As part of USA Team 2, Smith achieved 17th place and is now one of the few teams representing the continent. He will be competing again on Oct. 23, 2015, deciding if USA Team 2 will be one of two top teams in the continent or one of the top 10 teams in the world. Please continue to use the website and mobile voting guides to support Elliot and USA Team 2!

UPDATE from Oct. 15, 2015: Valley senior Elliot Smith is traveling to China to compete in the International Chinese Bridge Language and Culture Competition. There are competition judges, but contestants can also receive support from voters to stay in the competition.

To support Smith in the competition, vote on the website or in the WeChat app from 4 a.m. Oct. 17 to 11 p.m. Oct. 30. Each person may vote up to 500 times per day, as long as the votes are at least one minute apart.

The website and app are in Mandarin Chinese, so we were provided with English-language voter guides.

Website Voter Guide

Mobile Voter Guide

All contestants will complete a written exam and give a short speech. This year’s speech theme is “Learn Chinese and Expand Your Horizons.” They will also perform a talent, like singing, martial arts, playing a traditional Chinese instrument, or painting.



Ganga and Smith at the Chinese competition. Photo credit: Pan Na.

May 28, 2015: Two Valley High School students won first prize in their divisions at the Chinese Proficiency Competition for Midwest U.S. High School Students at Wayne State University in Detroit, on Saturday, May 16. Junior Elliot Smith won overall first prize and first prize in the 11th Grade Division. Sophomore Arjun Ganga won overall third prize and first prize in the 10th Grade Division.

As a result of their performance, Smith and Ganga also won a free trip to China for later in the year. They will be representing the Midwest U.S. at the International Chinese Language and Culture Competition in competition with more than 80 other countries. The trip is sponsored by the Chinese National Office for Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language Confucius Institute program.

Chinese is one of six world languages offered at Valley High School. It was first offered in the 2008-9 year. Students learn the Mandarin Chinese language and also study Chinese culture.