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Center for Chinese Business

Fostering close relationships among academia, business, and government in the United States and China.


To provide international management education to Chinese business and government organizations and serve as a gateway for Chinese undergraduate and graduate students to enter West Virginia University.


  • Recruit Undergraduate and Graduate Students from China
  • Short-term Executive Training Programs at WVU
  • Seminars and Workshops in China
  • Facilitate Academic Partnerships between China and WVU

Fostering international trade

The Center pursues its mission through a wide range of activities, including:

  • Assisting West Virginia companies develop business opportunities in overseas markets through market research, prospect identification, strategic planning for market entry, and due diligence for potential joint venture and trade partners
  • Helping our corporate partners make the social connections they need through our extensive network of influential academic, business, and government organizations in China and elsewhere
  • Developing and teaching management seminars on export strategies to company executives
  • Leading study trips abroad for groups of West Virginia business leaders and students
  • Developing customized trade missions and consulting services
  • Teaching executive education programs for senior Chinese officials (for example, our Shanghai and Tianjin Municipal Government Executive Education Programs)
  • Conducting short-term executive training programs for Chinese companies
  • Offering an MBA degree program with an international focus


To foster mutually advantageous understanding and collaboration between Chinese and U.S. businesses, the Center for Chinese Business currently conducts the following programs:

International Trade Facilitation

The Center connects its corporate partners with more than 200 Chinese alumni, many of whom have attained very high levels in their organizations and have strong allegiances to West Virginia University.

This allegiance is reinforced through an annual alumni meeting in Shanghai, Tianjin, and Xian each June, where corporate partners have the opportunity to network with former participants and their families. Gaining an introduction to these Chinese executives would be quite difficult without the relationships the Center has cultivated.

The Center offers export seminars throughout West Virginia and has expanded its scope of activities to include export assistance throughout the world. The same level of expertise that the Center has used during the past fifteen years to assist companies in China is used to aid West Virginia companies wishing to explore trade opportunities around the globe.

International Academy of Management Excellence

The International Academy of Management Excellence provides long-term management education to high-level business leaders in Shanghai, Tianjin, and Xian, China. Each year since 1997, corporate partners travel to China with West Virginia University business faculty to offer two-day seminars on successful business and industry management practices.

High-level Chinese executives who cannot regularly travel to the United States receive a specialized educational program taught by U.S. business executives and university faculty. U.S. companies gain business exposure to high-level Chinese decision makers who otherwise would not be accessible. The Academy is co-sponsored and facilitated by the municipal governments of Shanghai, Tianjin, and Xian.

Participants are carefully chosen based on their ability to have a positive impact on development of the region's economy. They gain knowledge essential to conducting business in a market economy and make contacts with corporate executives from companies interested in long-term business relationships in China.

U.S. corporate partners get significant media attention as "friends of education" in China and gain a reputation that will open many doors through the development of important relationships with Chinese leaders in business and government.

China Municipal Government Executive Education Program

For the past fifteen years, the Center for Chinese Business has been instrumental in educating government and business leaders from China's three largest cities: Shanghai, Beijing, and Tianjin. High-level business and government officials study at West Virginia University for six months, exploring international business, strategic planning, regional international business, strategic planning, regional economic development, international financial market, American culture, and English. They also meet key leaders in American companies through corporate seminars and visits.

The Center now has more than 200 Chinese alumni in leadership positions throughout China including the President of Shanghai Construction Company, Chairman of the Board of Shanghai Airlines, Vice-mayor of Tianjin, Director of Shanghai Post Bureau, and the Vice-president of Baoshen Steel Group.

There are many more Center alumni in significant government and business positions who have developed strong ties to West Virginia. The Center continually aligns itself with U.S. corporate partners who recognize the long-term business value of developing relationships with its special network of Chinese alumni and friends.

Export Management Course

West Virginia University, in conjunction with the West Virginia Export Council, the United States Department of Commerce, and the WVU Center for Chinese Business has recently expanded the course in Export Management, in which students and company representatives are teamed to develop an export marketing plan targeted to the specific needs of the participating company.

This program is designed to promote exporting in West Virginia, by helping participants assess their export readiness skills, as well as by guiding them through every aspect of exporting. A panel of guest speakers from different areas (such as US Department of Commerce, US Small Business Administration, West Virginia Development Office, freight forwarders, financial institutions, law firms, travel agencies, and successful exporters) lecture on the different steps of exporting. In addition, there will be several opportunities to hear practical, real life advice from West Virginia companies actively exporting. An Export Manager Certificate will be conferred to each participant at the end of the program.

The classes are offered on a five-weekend schedule over a twelve week period. Meeting times for the five weekends are: Friday evenings from 7:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. The following is an outline of the program and tentative dates.

This class will be in Morgantown in the College of Business and Economics at West Virginia University each spring, and in Charleston each fall.

MBA International

Our MBA program has an international and technology-based curriculum. Alongside U.S. students, experienced international students get an MBA from an AACSB-accredited program in 13.5 months at a very reasonable price.

U.S.A-Sino Double Bachelor’s Degree Program

The purpose of the program is to facilitate educational exchange and cooperation, share high quality educational resources in the field of Finance or other majors and equip students with advanced knowledges, introduce students to the frontiers of their major with a solid mastery of related foundation subjects.

Both WVU and Chinese Institution jointly offer a four-year double bachelor’s degree program in finance or other business majors to be delivered by WVU and Chinese Institution. Both parties jointly design the teaching and quality control of the program.

After successfully completing all courses in the jointly designed program plan and meeting the degree award requirements of both institutions, Chinese Institution will issue a 4-year graduation diploma and a Degree of Bachelor of Economics. WVU will issue a Degree of Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with an area of emphasis in Finance or other major.

The eligible students can study at WVU John Chambers College of Business and Economics for one more year and receive a master’s degree in finance or other major.

WVU Center for Chinese Business has set up double degree programs with Tianjin University of Finance and Economics and Shanghai Business School.

Chinese Faculty Professional Development Program

The purpose of this program is to facilitate the international cooperation of academic researches between WVU and its partner universities in China, promote the student exchange between WVU and China’s institutions; develop the scholars’ research and teaching abilities, and make the visiting scholars better understand the culture and society of U.S.A.

Program Components

  1. Conduct joint researches: The visiting scholars conduct researches together with their WVU mentors matched by WVU Center for Chinese Business (CCB) in the fields that both have interests
  2. Audit Professional Courses: The visiting scholars have opportunities to unofficially audit the courses. These courses may keep the visiting scholar up-to-date on new research on their teaching fields, emerging teaching technology tools for the classroom, new curriculum resources, and more. Also they may contribute their knowledge to the class.
  3. Intensive English Training: An intensive English program will be exclusively provided to the visiting scholars in fall and spring semesters, which will greatly improve the visiting scholars’ spoken, written, reading and listening skills.
  4. Field Business Visits: CCB organizes field visits and trips during the program, including local government agencies, companies, non-profit organization to meet the people to understand the society and culture.
  5. Seminars and Lecture Series: CCB organizes variety of lectures exclusively for the visiting scholars and keep sending the visiting scholars the updated list of lectures/semesters open to all the students/scholars on campus each month.
  6. Social and Cultural Activities: CCB organizes the visiting scholars to travel to surrounding areas, including Morgantown, Pittsburgh , Washington DC to participate in different social and cultural activities.

K-12 Student Chinese Language Teaching Facilitation Program

The purpose of the program is to promote mutual understanding between the people of West Virginia and the people of China. China is one of the top 3 export and import partners for the state of West Virginia. West Virginia companies regularly attend the China Coal Mining Exposition in Beijing and the Wood Products Expo in Shanghai. People in West Virginia need to know the Chinese language and culture to help them understand Chinese business and establish more business partnerships with Chinese companies.

WVU Center for Chinese Business work closely with West Virginia Department of Education, and related School Districts across the state to provide the k-12 student Chinese language and culture program and provide Chinese Language Learning and Certificate Program for School Teachers in the state of West Virginia.

The k-12 student Chinese language and culture program is one of the critical foreign language programs, which offers preliminary and intermediate Chinese courses in schools through face to

face or online teaching. The purpose of the program is to broaden the students’ global experiences and give them another choice of language growth other than France and Spanish.

Study in China

Students, faculty, and West Virginia company executives travel to China for a series of classes, corporate and cultural visits to identify the market potential for West Virginia products. Students and faculty work in teams with company executives to determine the export readiness of the company and develop a market entry strategy for the Chinese market.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why does a university in a small rural state like West Virginia have a Center for Chinese Business?

  • China's 1.3 billion people represent the world's largest country. China has one of the fastest growing economies in the world and an emerging middle class with tremendous purchasing power. No country or university can afford to overlook China's present and future influence on the world's economy.

How do West Virginia companies benefit from a Center for Chinese Business?

  • The Center for Chinese Business has developed relationships with hundreds of influential business and government officials over the last decade. Chinese business operates through "guanxi" or an intricate set of relationships and friendships that allow business to operate effectively in spite of the complex Chinese government bureaucracy. Market information, due-diligence, customer identification, agent identification, and supply chain issues are very difficult to navigate in China. The China Center uses its network of relationships to help West Virginia companies find solutions to these questions.

How do West Virginia University students benefit from a Center for Chinese Business?

  • The Center for Chinese Business sponsors a study abroad trip each summer to China where WVU faculty, WV companies, and students spend two-weeks exploring the China market. The Center also sponsors an Export Management Program each semester where students, and WV companies work together to develop a market entry strategy for export markets around the world.

Why should a small company in West Virginia consider exporting?

  • There is an old saying "If you're not on their doorstep then they will be on yours." If you don't have a face to face relationship with your customer then you face a particular threat from a competitor taking your customer. Survival in many companies depends on their ability to expand their markets internationally. You can't afford not to consider exporting.

What is the benefit of having hundreds of WVU alumni in high-ranking positions throughout China?

  • While relationships are important in any country, they are essential to doing business in China. Our alumni may not be able to answer a particular question themselves but they will know where to go to find an answer. They can also perform due-diligence on potential customers, joint-venture partners, and agents in China.

Why do Chinese business and government officials and students want to come to West Virginia University?

  • West Virginia is viewed as safe, friendly, and beautiful. "Almost Heaven" is known around the world and Chinese people are anxious to experience West Virginia. Interestingly, since 9/11, interest in West Virginia has actually increased. We are close to big cities but not in big cities. We have a reputation of being a "safe haven" that welcomes people from other cultures.

How can I participate in one of the programs for business offered by the Center for Chinese Business?

  • Contact Bill Riley or Victor Chow to answer your questions directly at 304-293-7885. We will gladly arrange an appointment to discuss the international trade of your company.

How can I participate in one of the programs for students offered by the Center for Chinese Business?

  • Contact Michael Zhao at 304.293.3047 to discuss questions about academic programs.

How does West Virginia benefit from exporting their products and services?

  • Exporting creates 20,000 jobs per billion dollars of export sales. Exporting firms pay 15 percent higher wages than non-exporting firms. Exporting companies grow faster and are less likely to go out of business than non-exporting firms.