Pri­vate univer­sity in Hangzhou names pres­i­dent

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - CHINA - By MA ZHENHUAN in Hangzhou mazhen­huan@ chi­nadaily.com.cn

Shi Yigong, a for­mer Prince­ton Univer­sity pro­fes­sor of molec­u­lar sci­ence, was named as pres­i­dent of the new West­lake Univer­sity in Hangzhou, Zhe­jiang prov­ince, China’s first pri­vate school aimed at cul­ti­vat­ing high-level tal­ent in ad­vanced tech­nol­ogy to push the coun­try to the fore­front of sci­en­tific re­search.

Shi, who also serves as pres­i­dent of the West­lake In­sti­tute for Ad­vanced Study, was cho­sen on Mon­day by the school’s board of trus­tees, which also named two vice-pres­i­dents — Xu Tian and Qiu Min.

The board also named physi­cist and No­bel lau­re­ate Yang Zhen­ning as hon­orary di­rec­tor.

The 21-mem­ber board in­cludes Pan Jian­wei, a lead­ing Chi­nese quan­tum sci­en­tist, and neu­ro­bi­ol­o­gist Rao Yi, for­mer dean of Pek­ing Univer­sity’s School of Life Sciences.

“It is my obli­ga­tion to do a good job as pres­i­dent of West­lake Univer­sity. I am pre­pared to do my best to make it an in­sti­tu­tion of na­tional pride on the global higher ed­u­ca­tion stage,” Shi said.

The univer­sity’s 2018 bud­get and de­vel­op­ment plan was also ap­proved.

Zhou Gup­ing, a pro­fes­sor at Zhe­jiang Univer­sity’s Col­lege of Ed­u­ca­tion and vice-pres­i­dent of the Zhe­jiang So­ci­ety of Ed­u­ca­tion, told China Daily on Tues­day that she ex­pects the univer­sity will turn its blueprint into re­al­ity.

“For ex­am­ple, is­sues need to be ad­dressed con­cern­ing how to en­sure the ef­fec­tive oper­a­tion of the univer­sity and re­cruit more top-notch teach­ers,” she said.

Ap­proved by the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion this month, West­lake Univer­sity is a new type of re­search-ori­ented univer­sity that will fo­cus on ba­sic and ad­vanced sci­en­tific and tech­no­log­i­cal re­search.

Launched by the Hangzhou West­lake Ed­u­ca­tion Foun­da­tion, it is a non­profit or­ga­ni­za­tion for higher ed­u­ca­tion and ad­vanced aca­demic re­search.

The univer­sity is recruiting and train­ing doc­toral stu­dents in as­so­ci­a­tion with Fu­dan and Zhe­jiang uni­ver­si­ties. The first 19 PhD can­di­dates were en­rolled in Septem­ber, with 130 more to be re­cruited this year.

Shi Yigong

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