Why Study Asia

Asian cultures and societies are crucial to understanding the world today. Encompassing numerous geographical locations and several of the largest nations in the world, Asia is immensely important to the global economy. Asia is rich with diverse religious practices, continually transforming political policies, and varied artistic pursuits. Asia no doubt will continue to play a decisive role in shaping the world in the 21st century.

Paul A. Volcker, former chairman of the Federal Reserve and economic advisor to President Barack Obama, 2009 Union Commencement Speaker comments on the importance of studying Asia. Click here to read his full address to the Class of 2009.”



Asian Studies at Union

The Asian Studies program provides a broad, interdisciplinary liberal arts education focusing on the language, culture, and the arts of Asia (with emphasis on China and Japan). The courses students take in this program develop their interests and equip them for careers requiring exposure to global issues, particularly those pertaining to Asia. The major leads to a Bachelor of Arts degree and our graduates have gone on to careers in business, government service, law education, the arts, journalism, or further study in graduate school.

Study In Asia

Union College strongly believes that study abroad is an integral component towards building global citizens and there is no better way to understand Asia than through intensive language and cultural immersion. Asian Studies works with the International Programs Office to offer several full-term study abroad programs in China, Japan and Vietnam, as well as many mini-term opportunities such as in Bali, Cambodia, China, and India. Students are strongly encouraged to engage with Asian peoples and global culture through firsthand experience abroad.

Multi Media Bar

Yin Mei

Thursday, January 30, 2014 | 2:00-4:00 p.m. | Henle Dance Studio
“Yin Mei is a dancer of luminous clarity… her movement a combination of delicacy and strong intention, and firmly rooted feet that support swooning explorations of arms and
torso.” – Los Angeles Times

Kaoru Watanabe on Japanese Drums

Monday, September 30, 2013 5:00-5:50 p.m. Emerson Auditorium Master Class on flute from...

Mandarin Cultural Exchange

Union’s first year Chinese language students participated in the inaugural...

Earth Day Concerts – Union College Taiko Drummers Performing

Earth Day Concerts at Rensselaer
Sunday, April 21, 2013

Film Screening with Director Davy Chou

Wed., April 10 at 5:30 p.m.
Reamer Auditorium

2012 Bali Mini-term

What did we do on the mini-term in Balinese Performing Arts? We arrived in Ubud, the...

Pink Globalization: Hello Kitty’s Trek Across the Pacific

Friday, October 26 – 11:45-12:50 (reception to follow) Emerson Auditorium, Music...

The Silk Road – Professor Eshi Motahar

On the Way from China to Rome: The Political Economy of the Iranian Section of the Silk Road  
“Silk Road” refers to a network of roads that, for about 2000 years, linked China, India, and parts of Central Asia, via Iran, to the Mediterranean basin. Its length is estimated at well over 8,000 kilometers. An important branch of this network traversed Iran. This branch, itself consisting of several sub-branches, was quite active until the end of the Safavid Empire—around early 1700’s.  During the Safavid period silk was the largest source of Iran’s foreign trade earnings, and it was also the largest source of revenue for the Safavid court located in Esfahan. Silk was not the only commodity that went from China, Iran and other countries along the route to Europe. Nor was it purely a commercial route. Many religious (e.g., Zoroastrianism, Christianity, Buddhism, Islam), artistic, and other cultural influences moved and spread along this road. Many of the sites along the road are among UNESCO’s World Heritage sites.

South Korea – Professor Joyce Madancy

This summer, I had a wonderful opportunity to travel to South Korea on a study tour with...

Hopkins-Nanjing Center

Are you interested in GRADUATE STUDY in CHINA? Come learn about the Hopkins-Nanjing...