The Athens College Chinese program was established in 2008. Since its inception, 561 students have attended, most of whom have sat for the official YCT & HSK examinations. YCT and HSK are China’s only standardized tests of Chinese Language Proficiency for non-native speakers, initiated by the Beijing Language and Culture University and established by the Chinese Ministry of Education. Since 2010, the College has been a center for the YCT1, YCT2, YCT3, HSK1, HSK2 & HSK3 exams with Athens College students scoring high – among the top results - with 90% success rate and 23 students having acquired the highest official diploma HSK3.
Today, the Athens College Chinese program ranks top among similar school programs in Greece.
The program counts 5 teachers, joined by teaching fellows from the Beijing University that came on board with the support of the Business Confucius Institute in Athens, the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Greece and the Chinese Ministry of Education. The Embassy has always been a close partner of the College’s Chinese Program, which counts significant partners and synergies. Since 2012, the Confucius Institute in Hanban, China, in collaboration with the Greece-China Association and later (from 2014 onwards) the Peking University, have offered 15 annual scholarships for Athens College students to attend fifteen-day summer camp programs at the University. Since 2015, the Chinese department has participated in the School’s Christmas Bazaar with its popular “Chinese Corner”.
In January 2019, a Hellenic-Chinese Spring Cultural Festival was organized at the initiative of the Athens College Special Programs’ Chinese Language Department and related Parents’ Associations, in partnership with the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Greece with the aim to strengthen and promote Hellenic-Chinese relations and cultural exchanges. Students from six schools from Hangzhou, China joined the Greek students in presenting various cultural performances from the two countries.