United States Heartland China Association




Patrick McAloon - Executive Director

Having made his first trip to China in 1997, Patrick McAloon has been connecting Chinese and Americans for over 20 years. After leaving the eCommerce company MeetChina.com in 2001, McAloon taught Chinese at the Ohio State University for 14 years.

In addition to his work for the USHCA, McAloon is a partner in the consulting firm SinoConnect, owns and manages rental properties in Columbus, Ohio, is a founding member of the Greater Columbus Chinese Chamber of Commerce, and is a past chair of the Hefei/Tainan subcommittee for Greater Columbus Sister Cities International.

Under the guidance of Galal Walker, Minru Li and Huanzhen Zhao, McAloon won a first place prize at the 2004 Chinese Bridge world final competition for non-native speakers of Chinese in Beijing.

McAloon is the author of the guide to study abroad in China, “Studying in China,” based on his experiences in taking American students to China. He holds a PhD in Chinese language pedagogy from the Ohio State University and a BA in East Asian Studies from the College of William and Mary.

Contact him at pmcaloon@usheartlandchina.org

Intern Team


Jason Conley (Dover, OH)

Jason Conley is a recent graduate from the Ohio State University and is looking forward to beginning his Master's degree in Chinese language in the fall.


Minchen Hu (SHenzhen, china)

One of the biggest life goals for Minchen is to tighten knots between communities by building empathy and tearing down information asymmetry. Prior to USHCR, Minchen interned with the Columbus (Ohio) City Council after graduating from Denison University in 2018.


Noa Atkins (Cincinnati, Oh)

Noa Atkins is a sophomore at The Ohio State University, studying International Business and Information Systems. She is involved in the International Affairs Scholars Program, and enjoys volunteering and participating in clubs on campus.


Eliza KeffEler (Memphis, TN)

Eliza a student majoring in Chinese and Business at the University of Mississippi.


Olivia Smalley (west grove, PA)

Olivia is currently a senior at the Ohio State University, double-majoring in International Relations & Diplomacy and Chinese.


Christina Fritz (St. Louis, Missouri)

Christina Fritz is a junior at DePaul University in Chicago studying Political Science with a concentration in International Studies and minoring in Mandarin Chinese. She has a strong personal interest in political advocacy and U.S. - China international affairs. 


Grace Zhang (Carmel, Indiana)

Grace Zhang is a sophomore at Case Western Reserve University studying biochemistry and international studies - global health. In her free time she enjoys photography and digital art design.