The East Asia Center was founded in 1975 to provide a forum for faculty and student interest in East and Southeast Asia. The Center sponsors a speaker series and travel grants, and promotes activities and events related to Asia. The Center is an interdisciplinary organization of faculty, each of whom is a full member of a department. Asia-related courses are taught as part of the various departmental curricula. The Center does not have its own faculty or course offerings. The Center administers the interdisciplinary MA and MBA/MA degree programs in Asian Studies, encourages and coordinates Asia-related activities, especially the lecture series, and administers a travel grant program for student and faculty travel to Asia. The East Asia Center, along with the Center for South Asian Studies and the Tibet Center, is one of the component units of the Asia Institute.
The University of Virginia Library has impressive holdings in East Asian languages -- about 46,000 monographs in Chinese, Japanese and Korean, of which approximately 80% are in Chinese and 20% in Japanese. In addition to the books regularly acquired from China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Japan, the East Asian Collection in Alderman Library houses part of the personal collection of the late Professor Ma Kiam of Hong Kong University. The Ma Kiam collection, acquired by UVa in 1960s, consists of about 10,000 volumes of Chinese classics in the traditional Chinese book style. Several years ago, Professor Stanley Weinstein of Yale offered in bequest his personal library of about 70,000 volumes, mostly composed of books in Japanese on Buddhism in Japan-including many valuable reference materials.