Later this month Yale President Richard Levin (seen here) and other officials from Yale University will meet with leaders of universities in Beijing and Shanghai to forge new partnerships, bridging medical and engineering programs between Yale and China. Richard Levin said, ‘We’re looking to take some of our programs in China to the next level. I think the main thing that is interesting and actually fascinating about China is the number of very bright people in leadership roles.’
The Yale delegation will participate in the centennial celebration of Fudan University in Shanghai, where Levin will receive an honorary professorship in economics. Yale genetics professor Tian Xu said the delegation will also visit three top Chinese hospitals. A major goal of the visit, Xu said, is to negotiate funding for talented Chinese students who apply to Yale’s Biological and Biomedical Sciences graduate program.
Tian Xu said, ‘Currently in our BBS graduate program, we receive a lot of foreign applicants, but we do not have funds to support those students. The reason is that funding that comes from the National Institutes of Health is restricted to U.S. citizens. We would like to accept more of the best students around the world, and so we hope that these universities in China could initially fund Chinese applicants.’
The group will also visit Beijing, to participate in the official signing ceremony opening a new microelectronics and nanotechnology center run jointly by Yale and Peking University. Electrical Engineering Chair T.P. Ma, who will join Levin in Beijing, will run the center along with Peking University professor Wang Yangyuan.
Ma said the new center, funded in part by the Chinese government, will permit the two universities to pool their resources and improve the quality of research. Ma said there are fewer students at Yale studying electrical engineering than at Peking University, and opening such a center in New Haven would be more difficult. He added, ‘We have excellent faculty, but much fewer students. We have a lot of good research ideas at the forefront of microelectronics and nanotechnology, but we don’t have enough people to carry out research.’