At China Institute, we believe that a deeper understanding between the U.S. and China is critical to strengthening our global community in the 21st Century, and that proficiency in the Chinese language will facilitate a more nuanced dialogue between and among our citizens and leaders. This belief is the foundation for our language programs, directed both at language learning and also at ensuring that Mandarin language teachers have high quality training available to them so that they can inspire, engage, and educate their students with maximum effectiveness.

Because of our position as a global leader in evaluating and understanding best practices in the teaching of Mandarin language, China Institute is in a unique position to employ in our classrooms what we are learning through research and teacher training. Thus, we strive to design our classes in such a way that they embody the best practices in methodology and curriculum available to educators today, and, in turn, to enrich our professional development offerings for teachers with what we have learned in the hands-on practical setting of our classrooms.

China Institute is chartered by the Board of Regents of the University of the State of New York as a school of continuing education.The Institute’s School of Chinese Studies, founded in 1933, is the oldest educational center of its kind in the United States.

At China Institute, our faculty are both scholars and your guides, to all things China.

Language Instructors

Ben Wang is Senior Lecturer of Language and Humanities at China Institute and he also teaches Chinese at the United Nations. He has lectured extensively on classical Chinese literature, literati painting, calligraphy and theater at Columbia University, Yale University, Williams College, New York University, the Smithsonian Institution, National Gallery of Art, the Lincoln Center, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, among others. As a translator, Mr. Wang received the National Prize in literature translation awarded by the National Literary Association of Taiwan. He was awarded Outstanding Citizen of New York City by the New York City Council in 2003. Since 1989, Mr. Wang has translated 39 classical Chinese poetic dramas into English.

Carl Chen holds a BA degree in English Language & Literature. He has years of experience teaching and tutoring the Chinese language at all levels and delivering customized on-site corporate training with his background in financial and travel industries. He is an interpreter for government interviews, international conferences and trade talks. He is also a Chinese language faculty member at CUNY City College.

Emily Chang holds a BA degree in Journalism and was a journalist for over 10 years, she then came to New York to earn a MA degree in Communication Arts. As she went to East China Normal University and the headquarter of Confucius Institute in China for further Chinese teaching training, she has extended experiences in teaching Chinese at all levels from elementary to adult for about 10 years. She currently teaches at SUNY, CUNY colleges. At the same time, Emily’s served NYC Dept. of Ed. as counselor and large law firms as interpreter/translator. She also published a book in regards to a Chinese smuggler based on a true story.

Fang Fu received her MA, Ed.M and Ed.D from Columbia University. Fang Fu is a New York State Certified Chinese teacher, tenured faculty member at Bard HS Early College, DOE, and an adjunct faculty member at NYU, Baruch College, and the Fashion Institute of Technology. She has been teaching Chinese language courses at all levels since 2002. Fang Fu is an honored member of Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in Collegiate Faculty, and Who’s Who in the World.

Hong Wu, a Beijing Native, has her MS in Applied Linguistics from Queens College, and received her BA degree in English from Beijing Normal College of Foreign Languages. She has taught both English and Chinese as a Professor and has extensive language teaching and teachers’ training experiences both in the United States and in China, particularly with college and adult learners. In addition, Hong Wu serves as the Associate Director of the Asian/American Center at Queens College, which engages in community-oriented research that analyzes the multicultural diaspora experience of Asians in the Americas.

Jia Situ holds a BA from Hunter College and an MA in Teaching Chinese and TESOL from New York University. She holds certificates in both teaching Chinese and teaching Chinese culture and traditional art. She has taught Chinese at various institutions, including The New School, Shuang Wen After School Program and FGS Chinese School, etc. She is currently teaching at Nightingale-Bamford School.

Lan Yang holds a MSED in Literacy Education from Queens College, CUNY. She is a certified NYS Chinese teacher, and holds the certificates in ACTFL’s (American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages) Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI) and Written Proficiency Test (WPT). Lan has joined China Institute since 2010. She is also an adjunct faculty at Pace University.

Maya Zhang holds a BA in Early Childhood Education. Maya is a New York State certified teacher and has started her teaching career here at China Institute since 2012. Over the years, she has taught at many different institutions and schools, among which the United Nations, United Nations International School, Avenues World School, Pace University, etc. She is known to make her class fun, interacting and effective at the same time.

Ping Wang earned an MA from Long Island University in TESOL (Teachers of English for Speakers of Other Languages) and a BA from Peking University, Beijing, China in Western Languages and Literatures. She has been teaching Chinese as a second language to foreign students since 1983, first at Beijing Language Institute for nine years. After moving to the U.S. she taught at the United Nations and the City College of New York (CUNY). She currently teaches at China Institute in the Adult Language Program and Private Tutoring Program, at New York University (NYU) and at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice (CUNY).

Qingliu Li received an MA in International Business from Tsinghua University. He received Graduate Certificates in Chinese Linguistics and Applied Linguistics from East China Normal University. He has taught Chinese and Business Chinese at The City University of New York and New York University. The courses he teachers include Mandarin Chinese at various levels and Business Chinese. He has been teaching at China Institute since 2003.

Rency Qu has a Master’s Degree in Adolescent Education of Chinese from Hunter College. She has a wealth of teaching, tutoring and curriculum design experience in various programs and Language Schools including Hunter College Chinese Startalk and Flagship Program, Teng Fei Language Center, East-West School of International Studies, and Brooklyn High School of the Arts. She’s passionate about teaching, and enjoys working with students from multiple backgrounds. Currently, she is an adjunct lecturer of Chinese at Fordham University, and has been teaching at China Institute since 2014.

Shiqi Song (Sophie) has her master degree for teaching Chinese to other language speakers in Shandong University. After she taught ESL for 11 years in China, she has been teaching Chinese for 5 years, including 1 year in France and 2 years in Canada. Being fluent in English and French, she has rich language learning and teaching experience and many useful strategies. She’s passionate about teaching, and enjoys working with students from multiple backgrounds and discussing various topics.

Shujen Yeo is a native of Taiwan who has also lived for years in the cities and countryside of Fujian Province. She has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington, and has taught Chinese at the University of Maryland. Her husband is a linguist of Chinese with whom she has collaborated in the compilation of Chinese teaching materials. Currently, she is an instructor for China Institute’s Private Tutoring Program.

Shouwen Pan was a professor of English of Jilin University before joining China Institute in 2017. In 2000-2001 he was a William Fulbright Scholar sponsored by the US State Department and hosted by the University of Mississippi. In 2007 he received PhD degree of English Literature at Nankai University. In 2010-2014 he taught classical Chinese philosophy, classical Chinese literature and Chinese at Confucius Institute of Rutgers University. In 2015 he published his monograph on Lao Tzu. In 2017 he finished his research project on “International Promotion of Classical Chinese Philosophy and Literature” granted by Jilin University and Department of Education of Jilin Province.

Steve Zhang received graduate degrees in history and classical studies. He has extended experiences in teaching Chinese at all levels and as well as in curriculum design. He has published on literature, history and culture in mainland, Taiwan and the United States and served on the board of editors for translation series Approaching China. He is currently a professor of Chinese language and culture at SUNY after years of lecturing at various schools such as City University of New York, Fordham University, Saint Mary’s College and University of Minnesota. He joined China Institute in 2005.

Wei Tang earned a bachelor degree in Chinese Language and Literature from Central China Normal University in China, and a MBA from Saint Ambrose University in US. Before joining China Institute, he has 12 years’ experience in teaching Chinese language at Augustana College and central China Normal University as lecturer. Besides teaching, he served as China marketing analyst for international firms, news editor for SinoVision, and is currently a writer and columnist for Chinese Teaching and Studies. His professional experience also includes assignments for International companies.

Wenxi (Maisy) Zhang is the Resident Faculty and Program Coordinator in the Adult Language and Studio programs at China Institute. She holds a MA in Foreign Language Education-Chinese and TESOL from New York University and a BA in Chinese Language and Literature from Hunter College. Before joining China Institute in 2016, Maisy taught Chinese at various institutions including Montclair State University and Hunter College. In addition to teaching Chinese, Maisy has been practicing Chinese calligraphy since an early age and has won prizes in several national and international competitions. She has been teaching calligraphy since 2009.

Xiaoling Dong received her MA in Chinese Classical Literature from Heilongjiang University, and Ph.D. in the same field from Harbin Normal University. She has been teaching Chinese as a second language at Heilongjiang University for 17 years where she taught over 1000 international students at all levels from all countries, with one year of teaching experience in Japan. Moreover she taught at the 2009 Summer Language Institute of Hendrix-Heilongjiang University and the 2011 Summer Language Institute of ACS-Heilongjiang University. In addition to Chinese language courses for international students, she taught Chinese classical literature courses as well. She came to America in July 2015, and wishes to be your friends.

Xiaoying Zhou is pursuing her MA in Adolescence Education (with a focus on teaching Chinese Mandarin) at Hunter College. Before joining China Institute in Fall 2015, Ms. Zhou taught Chinese at different institutions such as the Ithaca Chinese School. She is currently teaching Chinese at both Hunter College High School and Hunter College.

Ying Yu: With education in Business English and Teaching Chinese, Ying is an experienced Chinese language instructor in the United States and Europe. She has been teaching a variety of learners of all ages, either in small groups or on a one-on-one setting. She is also experienced in preparing students in language test, such as HSK and IGCSE. Ying joined China Institute in 2007, teaching in both the Adult Program and Children & Youth Program.

Yue Zheng has a BA in TESOL from Jiangsu Normal University in China, and a MA in English Language and Literature from Southeast Missouri State University. With a certificate in TCSOL (Teaching Chinese as a Second Language) from Columbia University, she has taught Chinese and ESL in both China and US, including EF English First, Xuzhou No. 31 Junior High School, and United Way of Southeast Missouri. She has been tutoring and teaching for China Institute since April 2015. Ms. Zheng’s professional experience also involves law practice.

Studio Instructors

Alex Hing is a senior student of Grandmaster William C.C. Chen and instructor at Master Chen’s Manhattan studio, and has been practicing Asian martial arts for over 25 years. He is a New York region Yang style gold medalist and third-ranking international heavyweight push hands competitor. He has taught Taijiquan at China Institute for 10 years..

Sungsook Setton has been trained in brush painting and calligraphy under Chinese and Korean masters. She has also studied Western art in Germany, U.K., and U.S., where she obtained a BFA at Stony Brook University and is currently working on her MFA. Sungsook’s work has been widely seen in the US, U.K., and Korea and is the recipient of many prizes and awards, including the “Best of Show” award at the National Exhibition of the Sumi-e Society of America, Inc. She has taught Chinese brush painting classes at China Institute for the past 3 years on subjects which include landscapes and plants and the use of color.

Jiaxuan Zhang earned a B.A. in Cinema and Photography from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and an M.A. in Cinema Studies from New York University. He started practicing Chinese calligraphy in his youth, and has been teaching for more than ten years.


I never met a teacher so excellent, so prepared with deep knowledge in world literature, in arts, in music, in theater and in Chinese philosophy.

Franco Zerlenga, Classical Chinese IV - Taught by Ben Wang

Thank you very much for providing such an excellent Chinese language workshop at the China Institute last Saturday. It was a very intensive and valuable educational experience.

Student, Essential Chinese for Travelers

I have taken several classes here and Vivian is my favorite instructor so far. She makes things very clear and provides good structure

Student, Business Chinese

Rency was great. Really enjoyed class and learned more than I thought I would

Student, L1A

Class is great. Appreciate that we can send sentences each week that Steve Zhang corrects and comments on.

Student, L1B

Excellent class, feel I’ve made tremendous improvement.

Student, Intensive L3

China Institute’s free tutoring program is so helpful in learning everyday vocabulary outside of class.

Student, Private Tutoring

The content of this class is fascinating. Steve Zhang is one of the most knowledgeable teachers I have ever met. I would love to attend a lecture by him of Chinese history/society.

Student, Reading Chinese Media Texts