Penn Media Scholars in China 2018

Study in Beijing and Hangzhou this summer with the Penn Media Scholars in China. The program will immerse students in China’s media industries, institutions, and citizens’ everyday media practices.

Penn Media Scholars in China (PMSC) is a summer institute that will bring eight Penn undergraduates to the Chinese cities of Beijing and Hangzhou from May 30 to June 20, 2018. While the program covers broad issues related to China’s media industries, institutions, and citizens’ everyday media practices, the institute in 2018 will devote special attention to media and communication related to environmental protection, sustainability, and cultural heritage in urban China.

The program is directed and led by Professor Guobin Yang, Grace Lee Boggs Professor of the Annenberg School for Communication and the Department of Sociology.

Through site visits, field observation, and interactions with professionals from the Chinese media agencies, internet firms, and environmental NGOs, PMSC fellows will develop first-hand understandings of media institutions and practices in China as well as how citizens, media, NGOs, and government agencies communicate environmental issues and respond to the ecological challenges facing China. They will also have the opportunity to interact with Chinese college students.

While in China, PMSC fellows will complete a capstone research project.

Program Schedule (Tentative)

Beijing, May 30-June 10

Hangzhou, June 10-June 20

In Beijing, the group will be hosted by Penn Wharton China Center and the School of Journalism and Communication of Renmin University.

On June 10, the group will travel by high-speed train to Hangzhou, where they will be based at the College of Media and International Culture at Zhejiang University.

In both Beijing and Hangzhou, the group will attend guest lectures by Chinese scholars and professionals, make site visits to media agencies and environmental NGOs, and interact with Chinese college students. They will also attend an international symposium in Beijing.

The program ends on June 20.


The program will cover accepted students’ housing, field trips, and some meals in China, as well as partial airfare. Funding for the program is provided by Penn Global's Penn China Research & Engagement Fund.

How to Apply

Eight students will be competitively chosen for the program. Applicants must have a 3.0 GPA or above. Please note that seniors graduating in May 2018 are not eligible to apply.

As part of the application, which can be found here, students must write and attach an essay of approximately 750 words explaining their interest in the program.

Applicants will need to obtain two letters of recommendation that speak to their academic ability and performance as a student. At least one of these letters must come from a Penn faculty member, while the other could come from a class dean or graduate teaching assistant. Letters can be emailed to with the subject line “PMSC – APPLICANT NAME Recommendation.”

Applications and the related recommendation letters are due by Friday, January 26, 2018.

For a information about and photos of the 2017 program, click here.

Questions? Please email