November 8, 2018 at 12:20 pm

Alumni News | Swartz Reaches Out to Help OHIO Chinese Language Students

Riley Swartz shown with mountains in background.

Alum Riley Swartz reaches out to help OHIO students

Ohio University alum Riley Swartz—苏锐理 in Chinese—recently sent an email to the Chinese language students through Dr. Liang Tao, the Chinese program coordinator, inviting them to learn more about the U.S. Critical Language Scholarship.

“I am always happy to help out Ohio University students, so if any of you current Chinese language students have questions about studying abroad or CLS or California, feel free to contact me!” Swartz wrote.

Swartz graduated from Ohio University with near-native fluency in Chinese. He currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area and works in IT risk consulting for KPMG. Many of his coworkers are from China, and he’s been able to use Chinese to speak with them in the office. His academic path demonstrates a highly successful realization of OHIO’s mission to produce global citizens.

Swartz graduated in Spring 2018 from OHIO’s College of Business with a major in Management Information Systems and Global Leadership Center Certificate. He grew up in Medina, Ohio, and started taking Chinese classes in eighth grade. Since then, he has had nine years of formal classroom Chinese study and four trips to China, including a two-month study abroad experience through the Critical Language Scholarship. He traveled to 12 different cities in China but spent the most time in Xi’an, Guangzhou, Wuhan, and Hong Kong.

During his time at OHIO, Swartz continued his Chinese language study, won the Critical Languages Scholarship (a national competitive scholarship) to study Chinese in China, and reached high fluency in Chinese. He went beyond the fourth year of Chinese to continue an independent study course for over a year, working on authentic Chinese materials, including highly technical Chinese on management information systems, Chinese history and culture, even reading the entire classic Chinese book The Art of War.

He leaves OHIO understanding and appreciating the Asian culture and language. More importantly, his special knowledge of Chinese language and culture landed him an important internship for the summer before his senior year, which turned into a job offer.

Upon graduation, Swartz took his mother to China to introduce to her his Chinese friends. Right after the trip, he went to the job that was waiting for him. He hopes to one day go back to China for work.

Note: Students who want to contact Swartz can Tao ( for his contact information.

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