Alcohol-focused degree set to open in China, among other unusual courses

For those who find themselves doing more drinking than studying in university, we may have found the perfect degree for you.

Introducing Moutai University in Renhuai, a university in China located at the southern province of Guizhou.

The university is funded by the Kweichow Moutai Company which produces one of the most common liquors within the country.

Besides drinking, the curriculum also includes wine-making as well as food-quality and safety studies.

The university will host about 600 students from Guizhou this year but will open up its doors to the rest of the country at the start of next year with a capactiy for 5,000 full-time students.

According to a news site owned by CCTV (China Central Television), the liquor industry has been struggling as of late due to a lack of technical skills in wine-making.

As such, a move to establish an institute dedicated to honing these skills may ultimately prove beneficial.

No fear Shakespeare

The students of Shakespeare4All putting on a playPhoto: S4All Hong Kong/Facebook

Stepping away from the tertiary platform, a charitable organisation has also been making its own ripples in Hong Kong's education scene by conducting workshops, classes, speech training, and the like for children aged seven to 15 to help improve their English.  

Though the concept may sound conventional enough to most of us, the classes are conducted unconventionally with the children being taught the language by learning and performing plays written by William Shakespeare.

The organisation, named Shakespeare4All, conducts the plays with a re-imagined script fitted into a context that's relatable and enjoyable to younger audiences.

The mission of the organisation, found on their website, states that they wish to offer a "learning environment that is creative, original, and structured."

In a conversation with Southern China Morning Post, Shiona Carson, the artistic director of Shakespeare4All, admits the difficulty reading Shakespeare's text may pose. 

“Shakespeare is confusing. A lot of the children will say: ‘I hate Shakespeare, it’s hard.’ So I use their comments. They start to see that they do enjoy it,” the 44-year-old Australian said.

Alternative education in China

The courses mentioned above are not the only options for those looking for a more alternative education in China. 

High School graduates also have the opportunity to major in cooking and marketing crayfish, as well as managing the crayfish industry.

Crayfish is one of the more popular dishes in China today.

The Jianghan Art Vocational College in Qianjiang which offers the programme has promised that students who finish the programme will not have to face the problem of unemployment.

Other unorthodox programmes in China include research courses on lottery, as well as the food science behind noodle making.

nicchew@sph.com.sg