Eight YSU students embark on trip to China


Eight Youngstown State students embark on an overseas adventure in a few weeks.
Chris Davidson spoke with the geology professor who leads them.

We start in Beijing. It’s a winter break class, so Beijing is the same latitude as Youngstown, Ohio, so it’s as cold. We go south from there.

Dr. Ray Biersdorfer tries to take a group of students to China each year.

This year, they leave the day after Christmas.

It’s a geology course so the emphasis is on geology and the environment

The students encounter many different groups.

China has 56 ethnicities, the Han Chinese are over 90 percent, but there’s 55 ethnic minorities, about 26 live in Hunan province … so every village we visit it’s a different ethnic minority.

They even make a stop in paradise.

We go on the Tibetan plateau. It’s a place called Shangri-La. It used to be called Cheng dion, but then they changed the name – you know the mythical paradise lost – so they changed the name. But the Chinese call it Shan-GREE-lah.

Biersdorfer says international experience is a necessity in today’s world.

We live in a global economy and a global world right now people need to get exposed to other environment and other people. The 21st century is going to be the Chinese century.

The world travelers return to Youngstown Jan. 13.

Andrew Bush edited this report. For TheNewsOutlet.org, I’m Chris Davidson.