So I realized that I have referenced the program that Spencer is in a few times but a lot of you might not know what it is. So I thought I might clarify, since it is the reason we are in China after all.
Chinese Flagship is a federally funded program whose purpose is "to create global
professionals who can function culturally and linguistically in the
professional Chinese world." Basically? The idea is to train you to do whatever it is that you want to do, in Chinese. For instance, Spencer is majoring in chemical engineering. A great field with lots of opportunities and he loves it. Spencer is also double majoring in Chinese. Especially awesome. He served a mission for our church for two years and loved the language and the people of Taiwan. But just think, how awesome would it be if he could do all his chemical engineering-ness in Chinese? By golly, he would be one valuable player, don'cha think?
Well, that's the idea. Currently there are about 35 students here in China, from several different schools including BYU, Oregon State, ASU, Ohio State, SF State...to name a few. Their majors can be just about anything. There are business or international relations majors, or similar fields. A few engineers, a few pre-law or pre-medical, Chinese majors, communications majors, and a bunch of others are in there as well. Because that's the idea. Do what you do, whatever it might be, in Chinese. You spend a year of studying Chinese at your respective university, then spend one semester as a directly enrolled student at Nanjing University (a top 10 ranked university in China) taking classes in your field, then one semester in an intership with a Chinese company in relationship to your field. NBD.
The awesome thing about this year's group of BYU students is that of the 9 of them, 6 are married. And two of the guys from ASU are also LDS and are married so that's 7 girls to explore and spend time with. Which is a life-saver, let me tell you. So if you hear me talking about the "Flagship wives" or even the "other wives", that's who I'm referring to.
We LOVE being in China (most of the time) and we are loving having this experience together. The Flagship program isn't perfect, but we are grateful for the opportunity to be a part of it and enjoy our time here!