Silk Road Tea Institute: An International Brand for the Exchange of the World Tea Industry
Guangxi Vocational & Technical College, formerly (GVTC) known as Guangxi Labor University, was founded in 1965. It has successively gone through historical stages such as Guangxi Agricultural College Tropical Crop Branch (undergraduate), Guangxi Agricultural Reclamation Workers’ University, and Guangxi Vocational University of Agriculture, Industry and Commerce.
In 1998, with the approval of the Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China, GVTC became one of the first batch of independent and restructured public higher vocational colleges in Guangxi. The College is located in Nanning Airport Economic Zone, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, China, with beautiful campus scenery and a strong cultural atmosphere. The College has been selected as a high-level professional group construction unit in the “High-Level Vocational Schools and Professional Construction Plan with Chinese Characteristics”.
The College adheres to the education direction of featuring agriculture and coordinated development of primary, secondary, and tertiary industries, and takes the initiative to adjust and optimize the professional structure by docking with regional economic pillar industries and strategic emerging industries.
GVTC has ten teaching faculties, including the School of Agriculture Engineering, the School of Health & Care, the School of Intelligent Manufacturing, the School of Big Data, the School of Art and Design, the School of Communication, the School of Logistics, the School of Business, the School of Marxism, the School of Liberal Education, with a total of 47 enrollment majors.
There are more than 21,000 students, including more than 130 international students from 9 countries including Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Indonesia.
The Major Group of Tea Tree Cultivation and Tea Leaf Processing in the College is the development focus of GVTC’s Double-High (High-Level Vocational School and High-Level Professional Groups) plan. In the process of developing the professional group, “Silk Road Tea Institute” has made significant progress as a brand for international exchanges in the College and has been widely recognized by international partners.
Taking tea as a medium and making friends with tea, the “Silk Road Tea Institute” has built a bridge for communication and exchange between China’s vocational education and “Belt and Road” countries. The project has been built into an international vocational education brand covering all aspects from secondary vocational education to higher vocational education, technical skills training to academic education.
Through unremitting efforts during recent years, the “Silk Road Tea Institute” has made great achievements in the construction of international tea industry cooperation base, the international exchange of tea culture, the construction of tea industry curriculum resources, and the humanistic and technical services for the tea industry and other aspects.
- The Construction of 4 overseas Silk Road Tea Institutes has been completed
Up to now, GVTC has cooperated with the Indonesia Research Institute for Tea and Cinchona(RITC), Mae Fah Luang University(MFU), Uva Wellassa University(UWU), and Northern Mountainous Agriculture and Forestry Science Institute(NOMAFSI), jointly build the “Silk Road Tea Institute”.
It has carried out extensive cooperation in many research fields such as tea production process and equipment upgrading, tea tasting, tea picking technology, tea plant research in high-altitude areas, and soil protection for tea planting, etc.
- Fruitful results in the international curriculum resources of the tea industry
The College has formed a complete set of international curriculum resources for the tea industry, including “Bilingual video MOOCs”, “English version of the course PPTs”, “English syllabus”, and some “After-class Exercises”, following the requirements of high-standard international course resource construction.
At present, 10 international curriculum resources have been completed, including Nixing Pottery, Chinese Dark Tea: Liupao Tea, Chinese Incense, Modern Tea Cuisine, Chinese Tea Art, Chinese Scented Tea: Jasmine, and Chinese Tea Utensils: Appreciation of Tea Sets. The “International Training Standards for Tea Learning (Elementary)” carried by these courses has been certified by SEAMEO TED (Southeast Asian Education Ministers’ Organization Regional Center for Technical Education Development) and CATECP (China-ASEAN Technical Education Cooperation Platform), and the relevant 10 curriculum experts have also been included in the ASEAN Expert Database.
Combined with the joint scientific research and technical training research of the “Silk Road Tea Institute” in various countries, new curriculum resources such as “Tea Production Technology”, and “Pest and Disease Control of Tea Plants” are under development.
- Wide range of audiences for the international tea cultural-related training
Through the “Silk Road Tea Institute”, the school has conducted a total of 9 in-depth seminars with experts from Indonesia, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, and Maldives, involving more than 70 experts and professors at home and abroad. and carried out in-depth research in tea production process equipment upgrading, derived milk tea products, joint development of tea, tea tasting, and other fields.
Overseas experts, including Thailand, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Japan, Italy, Turkey, Vietnam, and Myanmar, gave 11 lectures related to the tea industry to domestic colleges, with nearly 3,000 teachers and students directly participating in China. The school has also held 11 training sessions about tea, focusing on such excellent courses as “Chinese Tea and Organic Tea Production and Processing”, “Tea Sensory Evaluation Technology”, ” Current Situation and Countermeasures of Tea Garden Tourism in China”, ” The Construction and Management of Eco-Tea Garden”, attracting 2,300 students from Southeast Asia, South Asia, Japan, South Korea, and Eastern Europe to participate directly.
Three customized tea-tasting training sessions were held. For Thailand, the training was focusing on Chinese-Thai tea tasting, Beverage Preparation, Tea Grading Standards, and Tea Processing Methods. The training audience involved more than 300 people from 14 schools and enterprises in Thailand, and more than 20 kinds of tea were tasted in this training.
For Indonesia, the serial training was mainly around the development of Chinese tea culture, tea art performances, and some other content, with a total of more than 200 person times of tea lovers from multiple colleges, enterprises, and research centers learning experience.
As for Sri Lanka, GVTC jointly launched a series of training on tea processing skills with Uva Wellassa University in Sri Lanka, opened an offline training venue at UWU, and carried out a fixed teaching activity with a planning cycle of one month for UWU teachers and students and local tea enterprise personnel.
- A strong demand for academic studies related to the tea industry in China
Based on the cooperation between the “Silk Road Tea Institute” and various countries in different directions, in 2022, more than 90 students from Indonesia, Laos, East Timor, the Philippines, Cambodia, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and other South and Southeast Asian countries have willing to apply to study in China, focusing on the direction of “tea e-commerce” and “tea production and processing technology”. Through multiple interviews, the first group of 35 academic students was admitted to the Tea major.
- The Silk Road Tea Institute has played an important role in international academic research, industrial cooperation, and other aspects
At the end of April 2023, on behalf of Guangxi Vocational and Technical College, the ” Silk Road Tea Institute ” assisted The Scientific Unit of Technical and Vocational Education of Greek in organizing international internship and employment recruitment activities opened to China and ASEAN, and shared the school’s professional advantages during the event, which enhanced the overseas recognition of GVTC.
At the same time, the “Silk Road Tea Institute” is also incubating enterprise business cooperation group projects, planning to drive secondary vocational education institutions and enterprises to go overseas through domestic brand influence, and promote overseas industrial cooperation.
In September of 2023, GVTC will seek for cooperation globally at the 2023 China-ASEAN Tea Industry Vocational Education Cooperation Forum, transforming the “Silk Road Tea Institute” into a new platform for international tea industry exchange and innovation cooperation.