FOURTEEN leading international academics from the world’s top universities gave constructive suggestions for realizing the strategic objectives of the Southern University of Science and Technology (SUSTech) at the second meeting of the university’s International Advisory Council (IAC), which ended yesterday.
In two days, the members of the IAC listened to reports on the development of the university, toured the campus and had meetings with city officials to discuss further improvement to the competitiveness of SUSTech, which was established seven years ago in Shenzhen.
At a meeting with IAC members yesterday, Shenzhen Mayor Chen Rugui said the city will, as it has in the past, give full support to the development of SUSTech and that he hopes the council members will provide guidance and suggestions for the internationalization of SUSTech drawing from their significant experience in running world-class universities.
Reviewing the progress over the past year, Henry Yang, chancellor of the University of California, Santa Barbara, and chairman of the council, said SUSTech has made great progress in the construction of a medical school and development of doctoral programs.
In April 2018, the Ministry of Education approved SUSTech’s request to confer doctoral and master’s degrees. The university set a record for obtaining that qualification in the shortest time.
“We are impressed with the tremendous progress in such short time and the quality of the students. The doctoral programs are crucial for a research university. It is very important for a top university, especially in a city like Shenzhen with 22 million people, to have a very top-notch medical school,” said Yang.
Samuel Stanley, president of Stony Brook University in New York, was impressed with the progress that SUSTech has made in recent years.
“This is an amazing story. In a short few years, it was challenging for SUSTech to become one of the pre-eminent universities that is able to attract first-class faculty and students. The story of the university in very few words is as one of the universities to rise in China and in the world,” said Stanley.
Mark Schlissel, president of University of Michigan, was also impressed with the progress SUSTech has made.
“My university is just over 200 years old. It takes a long time to develop a legacy of academic excellence. SUSTech has grown into a very high-level quality university of international prominence in a few years. It has attracted outstanding faculty from around the world and offers instructional programs in English. We hold SUSTech in high regard and expect the university to be more successful,” said Schlissel.
David Leebron from Rice University is confident he will see more extraordinary progress from the university when the council members come back next year.
Tony Chan, former president of HKUST and current president of the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia, knows how difficult it was to develop such a university in a short time.
“Shenzhen is the Silicon Valley of China. The biggest advantage of SUSTech is the support from the government,” said Chan.
Edward Byrne, president of King’s College London whose medical school has a history of more than 1,000 years, praised SUSTech’s move to establish a medical school, saying it will undoubtedly lead to major improvements in health care in this part of China.
It was the fourth time that David Richardson, president of University of East Anglia, had visited SUSTech in the past three years.
He was impressed by the passion for innovation among the students. Richardson suggested that SUSTech maintain a strong focus on quality to cultivate students during the most creative, innovative and entrepreneurial state of their lives.
SUSTech was founded in 2011 with the mission of reforming and spurring development with innovation. Its distinctive Chinese characteristics stand out in the higher education sector, and it uses its unique mode to cultivate top-notch innovative talents to tackle the challenges faced by China in developing talent.
The university is ranked eighth among China’s 72 mainland universities on The Times Higher Education World University Rankings released this September. The ranking shows that SUSTech has performed well, especially regarding research, citations and international outlook.
The World University Rankings is a trusted global university performance table that evaluates research-intensive universities across their core missions: teaching, research, knowledge transfer and international outlook.
Original article: http://szdaily.sznews.com/PC/layout/201811/21/node_03.html#content_510725
Author: Han Ximin