The Opening Ceremonies of the Sun Yat-sen University-Carnegie Mellon University Joint Institute of Engineering (SYSU-CMU Joint Institute of Engineering) and the Sun Yat-sen University-Carnegie Mellon University Shunde International Joint Research Institute (SYSU-CMU Shunde International Joint Research Institute) were held at Sun Yat-sen University in the afternoon on November 12, 2012. The Grand Foundation Laying Ceremonies were also held on the same day at Shunde District, Foshan City, marking the start of the construction projects of the SYSU-CMU Joint Institute of Engineering in Guangzhou and the research campus of the SYSU-CMU Shunde International Joint Research Institute in Shunde district, Foshan City. Mr. Chen Yunxian, Deputy Governor of Guangdong Province; Ms. Zhang Xiuqin, Director General of Department of International Cooperation and Exchange of the Ministry of Education; Dr. Jared Cohon, President of Carnegie Mellon University; Professor Xu Ningsheng, President of Sun Yat-sen University; Ms. Jennifer Galt, Consul General of Consulate General of the United States of America in Guangzhou, China; Mr. Liu Yuelun, Mayor of Foshan City; Mr. Fu Lang, Director General of Foreign Affairs Office of the People’s Government of Guangdong Province; Mr. Wang Dong, Deputy Mayor of Guangzhou; Mr. Wei Zhonglin, Deputy Director General of Department of Education of Guangdong Province; Mr. Qu Shaobing, Director General of Bureau of Education of Guangzhou Municipality; Mr. Huang Xizhong, District Head of Shunde District, Foshan City; Professor Xu Jiarui, Executive Vice President of SYSU; Professor Chen Chunsheng, Executive Vice President of SYSU; Professor Li Mengfeng, Professor Xu Anlong and Professor Wei Minghai, Vice Presidents of SYSU, were in attendance at the ceremonies.
Before the beginning of the Opening Ceremony, Mr. Chen Yunxian, Deputy Governor of Guangdong Province, hosted a meeting with CMU delegation led by Dr. Jared Cohon, and leaders of SYSU led by Professor Xu Ningsheng. Mr. Chen extended his sincere congratulations to the cooperation between SYSU and CMU. He hoped that both universities would take the establishment of the two institutes as the turning point to deliver first-class graduate education, perform cutting-edge technological research and boost product development, contribute to the advancements in the key areas of information technology, solve practical engineering problems and make contributions to breakthroughs in key areas of information science and technology in China and the United States.
At the Opening Ceremony, Dr. Jared Cohon hoped that this event would be the beginning of what will be a long and productive connection between the two universities and would open ways for future students of the two universities to study and conduct research together to solve important problems for the world today. He believed, in the process, connections between the two universities and two countries will be strengthened. He also said that the partnership the two universities celebrating today would enhance the capabilities of both universities in creating important and innovative technologies that would put them on the paths to drive greater economic growth around the world. He said, “The two institutes being built today will be the settings for exciting innovation in engineering. It will be a place for experiments, for collaborations, for the emergence of new ideas, and for the education of the next generation of engineering researchers.”
Professor Xu Ningsheng said, the SYSU-CMU Joint Institute of Engineering is an important international joint partnership program between Sun Yat-sen University and Carnegie Mellon University. On the basis of our respective discipline features and advantages and in close connection with the industrial development demands of Guangdong, SYSU and CMU will develop top-notch electronic and computer engineering programs. The SYSU-CMU Shunde International Joint Research Institute, with the aim of maintaining Guangdong’s nationwide and even worldwide leading position in electronic and IT industry, will invite and form a team of experts to address practical engineering issues, develop advanced technologies and products, provide solid basis for industrialization of engineering technology in the Pearl-River-Delta region. In addition, the Research Institute will offer postgraduate students from both universities opportunities in world class specialized and professional education, scientific research, internship and entrepreneurship.
Both universities will take this collaboration as a turning point to cooperate deeply in scientific research, engineering education, technological development, faculty training etc. At the same time, through ways of fundamental research, technology development and industry promotion of core technologies in related fields, SYSU is working with the government and industrial sectors to build a R&D hub, promote reform of its scientific research mechanisms, and push forward the development of electronic and information industry in Southern China as well as the whole country. Through cooperation on the two institutes, SYSU and CMU are carrying out the highly competitive graduate education, and will timely offer undergraduate education soon, forming a complete education system ranging from Bachelor, Master to Ph.D.
The two institutes, thanks to the dedicated and vigorous support of Ministry of Education, National Development and Reform Commission and other departments of the State, the People’s Government of Guangdong Province, the Guangzhou Municipal Government, the Foshan Municipal Government and the People’s Government of Shunde District, Foshan City, are now successfully established, documenting another major event in international cooperation in China’s higher education. The preliminary talks on potential cooperation between SYSU and CMU started in October, 2009. On November 14, 2011, SYSU and CMU signed a cooperation agreement to set up a “Joint Institute of Engineering” and its subsidiary “School of Electronic and Computer Engineering”. To support the establishment of the SYSU-CMU Joint Institute of Engineering and the SYSU-CMU Shunde International Joint Research Institute, Guangzhou Municipal Government and the People’s Government of Shunde District, Foshan City, signed cooperation agreements with SYSU and CMU to support such great efforts respectively. The cooperation project was approved by the Ministry of Education recently.
Also attending at the Opening Ceremonies and Foundation Laying Ceremonies from CMU were Mrs. Robbee Kosak, Vice President of University Advancement; Professor Vijayakumar Bhagavatula, Interim Dean of CIT; Professor Tuviah Schlesinger, Department Head of ECE; Ms. Romayne Botti, Associate Dean of CIT; Professor Jian-Gang Zhu, Director of DSSC. Professor Han-Ping Shieh, Special Adviser to the President of SYSU, and Professor Li Wenjun, Assistant President of SYSU also attended the ceremonies.