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CEAS ICEA Series "Ambitious and Anxious: How Chinese College Students Succeed and Struggle in American Higher Education"

Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 4:30pm

Yingyi Ma, Associate Professor, Syracuse University


Abstract: Ambitious and Anxious offers a multifaceted analysis of the new wave of Chinese students based on research in both Chinese high schools and American higher-education institutions. I argue that these students’ experiences embody the duality of ambition and anxiety that arises from transformative social changes in China. These students and their families have the ambition to navigate two very different educational systems and societies. Yet the intricacy and pressure of these systems generate a great deal of anxiety, from applying to colleges before arriving, to studying and socializing on campus, and to looking ahead upon graduation.

Yingyi Ma is an Associate Professor of Sociology, a Senior Research Associate at the Center for Policy Research, and Director of Asian/Asian American Studies. Professor Ma is a sociologist of education and migration. She is the co-editor of Understanding International Students from Asia in American Universities: Learning and Living Globalization (2017), which has won the Honorable mention of the Best Book Award from the Study Abroad and International Students Section, Comparative and International Education Association. Her new book, Ambitious and Anxious: How Chinese Undergraduates Succeed and Struggle in American Higher Education, is forthcoming by Columbia University Press in December 2019. Professor Ma has received grants from the National Science Foundation, Alfred Sloan Foundation, and Association of Institutional Research. She received her Ph.D. in sociology from Johns Hopkins University in 2007.