By Tray Wetherell
Editor In Chief
Amid little protest from Tibetan independence supporters, Chinese President Hu Jin Tao visited Chicago on his only other leg of his visit to the United States which included a summit and state dinner in Washington D.C. President Hu first attended a recital that featured both American and Chinese music at Walter Payton College Preparatory High School. The president speaking through an interpreter spoke to the students after the recital saying that they should take every opportunity they can and invited them and their instructors to visit China in the future.
Walter Payton College Preparatory High School, is also home to a branch of The Confucian Institute, a Chinese government sponsored endeavor to help bring Chinese culture, language and ideas to American students with an emphasis also in mathematics and science. Unlike other branches of the Confucian Institute which are normally located at colleges and universities, the one in Chicago is important for being involved within a high school.
Later President Hu, accompanied by Governor Pat Quinn and Mayor Richard Daily of Chicago attended a business expo that highlighted Chinese companies that produce products in Illinois. Citing close economic ties and a $2 Billion soybean agreement with China, Governor Pat Quinn recognized the importance of China to not just the farmers of Illinois, but also to Illinois businesses as well. With over 300 Illinois based companies involved in producing and selling goods in China, Governor Quinn hopes that China will continue to increase trade within the state. Mayor Daily also said that he hopes that Chicago can become “China’s gateway to the Americas”.