Keeping pace with the times and marching forward with the nation’s hope regardless of twists and turns, Sichuan University ushered its 120th founding anniversary on September 29th. On the morning, SCU alumni from both home and abroad, the staff and students as well as leaders at all levels and friends from all walks of life gather here to celebrate its 120th anniversary, review its glorious history and look into its promising future for a world-class university.
Sichuan University is founded as a result of two mergers in 1994 and 2000 based on the former Sichuan University, the former Chengdu University of Science and Technology and the former West China University of Medical Science. Situated in West China, SCU is affiliated to the Ministry of Education as a comprehensive high-level research-oriented university under the Project 985 and Project 211. It is the pioneer of the Chinese universities for institutional reform in a new era, and also a model of Chinese higher education with the longest history, the largest scale, and the highest teaching level. In the past 120 years, Sichuan University has pooled many great masters such as mathematician Ke Zhao, botanist Fang Wenpei, litterateur Li Jieren, and chemical engineer Zhang Hongyuan, Guo Moruo and Ba Jin, renowned writers, Wang Fangding, an eminent scientist known for "atomic and hydrogen bombs and man-made satellite", and Le Niching, a founding figure in the modern gynecology and obstetrics in China. Besides, SCU has cultivated more than 700 thousand excellent graduates for the country and western China, including almost one hundred academicians and cultural celebrities. Over the past decade, more than 60% of graduates from SCU have voluntarily chosen to work in western China.
In the new historical period, SCU has set its goal of building a first-class university and a "three-step" development strategy; today, it’s moving forward to the grand goal of building itself into a world-class university. Prof. Xie Heping, academician and president of SCU noted that, the governments of Sichuan Province and Chengdu Municipality have signed a strategic agreement with SUC on jointly building a world-class university. To better explore for a path of building a world-class university in western China, SCU has taken initiative to establish the International Development Strategy Advisory Council composed of globally renowned scientists, educators, social activists and entrepreneurs. On September 28th, the Council held its first conference, and the Global Alumni Entrepreneurs Association was founded. On Sept. 29th, a fund of RMB2 billion for innovation and entrepreneurship contributed by global Alumni, the 100 million yuan project of the frontier medical Building of SCU funded by CheerLand Investment Group, the “1 + 0.1” billion yuan “innovation and entrepreneurship" special fund contributed by Chengdu High-tech Zone, the "cooperative innovation incubation fund" and "innovation venture capital fund", the 2-billion yuan "SCU-Blue Ray Fund for Innovation and Entrepreneurship" invested by Blue Ray Group, a 100 million yuan SCU-Kyland Education Fund for Innovation and Entrepreneurship contributed by Kyland Technology Co., Ltd, were also launched. All these funds are aimed to encourage and support SCU students and world's outstanding youth to start business in Chengdu and Sichuan, marking a new journey of SCU to build a world-class university.
At the Conference, leaders from SCU, Chengdu Municipality and Sichuan Province touched a crystal ball and kick-off the ceremony to build a world-class university. According to Prof. Xie, SCU is striving to become a think tank platform that should be able of cultivating talented graduates who have global competence and are capable of tackling future challenges; be able of generating new ideas, new knowledge and new theories that drive the progress of the world and mankind; be able of continuously creating core technologies for strategic industries that may catalyze national and social growth. It will also actively participate in the province’s innovation-driven development strategy, join hands with the governments to shape an internationally competitive talents cultivation system, foster a number of international top academic fields, and create big sci-tech centres and overwhelming technology platforms to meet the world's frontier and national strategic needs; it will plan to construct a pilot area for the reform of “three rights” of sci-tech achievements, the most attractive destination for global talents and international students, a high-end international platform for export-oriented development and a Sichuan model for building of world-class universities with the Chinese characteristics.
At present, SCU comprises 33 colleges, covering 12 categories and a total of 44 first-level disciplines authorized to award doctoral degrees. Among them, 14 disciplines of SCU rank among the top 1% in terms of ESI. The University also boasts 13 national research bases, 15 academicians, 60 Changjiang Scholars, 80 "Thousand Talents Plan" scholars. It has been awarded 13 projects in the first batch of national major R & D programs, and the number of SCI has ranked top 5th for 6 consecutive years among domestic universities, generating a number of leading international innovative achievements.