The goals of the Chinese program are to sharpen the intellectual skills of students and to encourage intellectual growth. The major offers students a broad understanding of the various Chinese speaking cultures around the world. Through language study students come to understand the interconnectedness of people despite different world views. The skills students acquire while studying Chinese include greater aptitude in concentration and self-motivation. They learn that rewards of language study are had through guided risk and challenge. As students develop linguistic and cultural proficiency they enjoy deeper conversations with the people of the Chinese-speaking world. With the growing political, economic, and cultural significance of China in the world students who graduate with Chinese have increased earning power. Union alumni have gone on to professional degrees in law, medicine, and teaching, as well as engaged in business and civil service roles that relate to the Chinese speaking world. In addition to the major and a minor, students can combine their language study with an Asian Studies major or interdepartmental major.