Quick question: University of Oregon

Folks, especially academics and Oregonians (if that’s the right word),

I have a student who may have the possibility of doing an MA at the University of Oregon. Being from the other side of one pond, and living on the other side of the other pond, I know nothing about it as a university, and only what I’ve gathered from these forums about Oregon itself. If any of you have any comments that you think I could or should pass on to my student, then I’d be very grateful to hear them.

Many thanks,

I spent 5 days in Eugene in September. I was pleasantly surprised - the people were very polite and friendly. I loved the huge trees. There was an open air market on Saturday - I had my first and only carton of raspberries for the season, listened to some music and saw university kids everywhere. This market was the only one that I have seen give metal forks with the food (you were supposed to return the forks for cleaning) The hotel was located near a park - the park runs along the river and traverses the length of the city, so biking anywhere close to the park should not have been a problem. Well that pretty munch sums up my knowledge of Eugene.

Does he work on Chinese culture? I have a colleague who did his PhD there in that field and he seems to have liked it a lot. West Coast of the US is fantastic and very high quality of life (and Eugene/Oregon is relatively cheap). Lefty, smallish university city–lots of hippy, punk, bike people (also a few rightwing and anarchist gun-nuts) and as I recall a good farmers market.

Its where they film all the Zombie movies and similar splatterfests.

Whether or not thats a good thing for your student is a matter of debate.

I do not lie except all the time.

We moved to Eugene 2 1/2 years ago. Lovely city, not too big, but big enough to have the sorts of things for which we need cities. The cost of living is lower than it was for us in SW Colorado.

The public transportation system is very good, the campus is walking distance from Saturday Market downtown, and the river. It’s certainly the most bicycle-friendly place I’ve ever lived, I’ve put 3k miles on the bike I bought when I moved here.

The University of Oregon is seen as a desirable school, enrollment goes up every year. The Maple Garden on Alder St. is my favorite chinese restraunt.

The local free rag: eugeneweekly.com/
The daily paper: registerguard.com/web/news/index.csp
Saturday Market: eugenesaturdaymarket.org/
Farmer’s Market (across from Saturday Market): lanecountyfarmersmarket.org/

Actually, it’s a “she”, she’s an English major, currently doing an MA in Interpreting here in Xiamen University. Very bright and has the makings of a very good interpreter if that’s what she eventually decides to go for as a career … she was the winner of the Mainland Final of the Cross-Strait Interpreting Contest earlier this year, and is due to go to Taiwan next month to take part in the Grand Final … experience says that she’ll be up against it there, 'cos young Taiwanese have certain advantages, like some of them having been to school in the US and therefore having English of native-speaker standard.

Anyway, thanks for all the responses so far. I’ll pass them on.


Beautiful place.

The one thing that takes some getting used to is the elevation…

Here we go! :frowning: Typical wassack. Itll be: oxygen starvation; blurred vision; nose bleeds; voices inside the head; hallucinations and dodgy/shifty looking Portlandes lurking on every corner. A typical Jobs Comforter, is our winged wonder.tch! tch! jeezzz :frowning:

Sounds like a night after you have been drinking your “green” liquor. :slight_smile:

No comment on Eugene, I’m afraid, and my experience with Chinese is limited, but I know that for Spanish speakers, their accent with English improves when they open their jaws more.

Just a thought. :slight_smile:

Mark, I have many friends who teach at Eugene, I was a guest lecturer there, and I’ve sent students there for graduate study. The U of Oregon is an outstanding American university, and it is especially welcoming to students from China.

If not forbidden these days, go to the school web site: uoregon.edu/. Enter “Chinese” as a search term, and you’ll see a wealth of resources.

The community is attractive, with mountains and sea coast near by, in opposite directions. If you want any more specific (and informed) advice, please contact me via PM.

Thanks again, all … including the vic-k - Wock banter. And especially druid for the kind of comment I really need. :wink: As I say, I’ll pass on the information. The only thing that concerns me about very Chinese-friendly universities anywhere, is that the Chinese students end up forming a kind of ghetto and only mixing with their fellow-countrypeople, which to my mind defeats a significant part of the purpose of going to study abroad. I spent yesterday afternoon with a student who has just returned from an MA in Interpreting at the University of Bath – generally thought to be the best, or at least the most desirable, department in that field in the UK – and she was echoing that sentiment, which I’ve also heard from other overseas returned students.

Still Oregon, Eugene, University of Oregon sound like good things, so I’ll give it my push … and no, druid, the website is not blocked.


I hear there might be an opening in Wall SD.


I humbly suggest that the student in question would be temperamentally unsuited and over-qualified for the vacancy in Wall SD.

Mr X

The bigger the school, the more likely that will happen. But smaller schools may not have the best set of resources.

Another problem: if they enjoy life too much in the USA, they don’t go home. Less likely to happen these days, with the job market so rotten!

In the states I would say about anywhere is rather “chinese friendly”. You will always have the one idiot but most people on general are real friendly to foreigners in the states especially around most universities.

Just avoid the “yankees” since they are an odd bunch. :slight_smile:

That, and Chinese students (and Asians in general) are generally viewed as “good” foreigners. Hard-working, benign political and religious attitudes, reasonably assimilated, etc.


Thanks people. Yes, the Chinese are good, hard-working, etc. people. But when I say they end up in a ghetto, it is partly that they ghetto-ise themselves, or find they need to. Let me give you a couple of examples:

  1. A friend of mine of many years, now in her mid to late thirties, a very intelligent, open-minded young woman with excellent English, BAs in English and in Economics. Three years ago, she went to University College London on a full British Government scholarship to do an MSc on Investment and the Environment. She told me that after two or three weeks she kept clear of the British students on the course and only mixed with the other foreign students on the course or other Chinese students at UCL. Why? Because she couldn’t have a conversation with the British students as they never wanted to talk about anything other than critically about Tibet and Taiwan, without willingness to listen to an alternative position, and in terms that made her feel they were holding her personally responsible for the Chinese government’s position and actions.
  2. Another friend of mine of many years, highly intelligent, the best English of any Chinese I know educated in China; she went to the States as a visiting scholar at a major US university. She found people were very friendly, welcoming, hospitable … until the day when they invited her to a prayer-meeting which she declined to attend. They wouldn’t speak to her after that; in consequence, she spent much of the rest of her time with Chinese acquaintances.
    And the more Chinese there are at an institution, the more the temptation is to simply avoid these kinds of issue by retreating within the Chinese community and not trying to find a way to bridge the gaps with the other community.

Maybe Wall and places like my area are better options. As we put it, ignore-ance is bliss. We ignore the news and politics (for the most part) to make everyone happier!

Although others would suggest that it is because we can’t read.

Well some tips if your friend comes to the south.

(1) If you are in a boat/canoe and you hear banjos, paddle faster.

(2) People down here talk slower. This is done on purpose. They are not trying to insult you they just talk slow. We also use many words differently like:

Fixin’ To, over-yonder, Git er dun, and Beau.

(3) “Sweet Tea” down here will make fur grow on your teeth. Be careful.

(4) Football is either College Ball or NFL, mention soccer and you may get confused looks.

(5) NASCAR is a serious sport, so is hunting.

(6) Southern Hospitality is well known and invitations come flooding in. Have plenty of good excuses for having to decline.