Thursday, April 07, 2011

Penn State's Tea Institute and Gongfu Cha club

This week, I'm at Penn State, in the USA. 18 years ago, I was a student at Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP), another State College, not far from Penn State. That's where I met my wife, from Taiwan, which is the primary reason why I eventually came to Formosa. So, the personal connection I feel with the US is strong and goes beyond merely graduating (with an MBA degree). It put my life on a whole new path, with a feeling that everything is possible, as long as you want it bad enough!

Now, 18 years later, I have the privilege to advise Penn State's Tea Institute and Gongfu Cha club through their advisory board. It started through emails with my longtime reader Jason Cohen (president of the Tea Institute) and now with this visit. I'm very glad to have this opportunity to help the members of this new Tea Institute learn about the Chinese tea culture. It's great to see the same tea passion among this group of students.

These 2 pictures capture how focused these students are when they're brewing tea!
Tea has no boundaries!


jay said...

Penn State class of 2001 here. Please tell me that this tea institute is new; really hate to think I missed out on a tea institute while I was there!

TeaMasters said...


The Institute was set up last year only!

John-Paul said...

Fascinating! This post led me to discover that something similar exists at the university that I attend. It's always nice to find others who share similar passions.

That is an nice looking teapot that I see in the pictures you posted. I'm always curious where people have sourced their equipment, especially people in North America. I also really like the cup holders depicted in the photos. I believe I have seen those same ones from you somewhere before.

So I wonder what brought you back to Penn State Stephane? It appears that you have lived and traveled many places around the globe. Have you ever visited any Canadian cities?

Tom said...

That's great that you got to visit with them. Jason was getting the club up and running just as I was leaving Penn State having finished my Master's.

TeaMasters said...

The Tea Institute at Penn State has invited me and Teaparker to come for workshops and an exhibition (see next article).

I've been to Montreal, Quebec and Toronto before, mostly during my year in the US, in 1993.

Unknown said...

I've been reading your blog for a little over a year and a half now and came upon this post via a more recent Pu'er Tea Exhibition post you have. I was elated to find out you are a fellow IUP alum! I am currently residing in South Korea, do you ever give classes or conduct workshops in this area? I hope one day our paths cross and I can have the opportunity to learn some of your infinite tea wisdom ^^

TeaMasters said...

Thanks for your comment. Glad to read you graduated from IUP! I haven't been to Korea, yet. In case I have the opportunity to go there for tea or teaware, I'll share about it on the blog.