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Last modified: Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Indiana University President McRobbie visiting Guangzhou as part of 15-day East Asia trip

May 22, 2013

GUANGZHOU, China -- Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie will continue a 15-day visit to East Asia in Guangzhou on Thursday and Friday with meetings at Sun Yat-sen University, one of China's most prestigious universities.

Michael McRobbie

Michael A. McRobbie

Print-Quality Photo

While there, McRobbie will seek to expand on an existing strategic partnership between IU and SYSU, which has resulted in the opening of a new philanthropy center at SYSU. Modeled on and developed in partnership with the newly named IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, it is the first major center for the study of philanthropy in South China.

The IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, on IU's Indianapolis campus, IUPUI, is the world's first school dedicated to the study and teaching of philanthropy. Approved last year, the new school builds on the strengths of the Center on Philanthropy at IU, a pioneer in philanthropy, education, research and training.

More than 4,700 students from East Asia are enrolled at IU, including more than 3,250 from the People's Republic of China, who accounted for more than 40 percent of IU's total international enrollment this past year. More than 100 students from IU's Bloomington campus studied in China last year.

McRobbie also will visit Beijing, Hong Kong and Shanghai during his visit to China. IU Vice President for International Affairs David Zaret and IU first lady Laurie Burns McRobbie are joining him on the trip.

"Indiana University is committed to meeting the changing needs of students and faculty in an increasingly globalized world," McRobbie said, "and that commitment is reflected in our strategic partnerships with China's most prestigious universities and in our ever-growing numbers of Chinese alumni.

"I am delighted to be back in China to extend efforts that have resulted in more overseas study opportunities for IU students in the world's largest country, enhanced research collaborations among faculty and staff here at IU and in China, and more of the best students from this important region of the world coming to Indiana to pursue a quality education."

This is McRobbie's third official visit to China since becoming IU's president in 2007. The trip is one element of IU's international engagement plan. The university has identified 30 countries as priorities and has plans in place to strengthen institutional ties, increase research opportunities and provide greater access to study abroad for IU students.

While in Guangzhou, members of the IU delegation will be accompanied by Joe Xu, professor of anatomy and cell biology at the IU School of Medicine and director of the Confucius Institute at IUPUI. One of the missions of the Confucius Institute, established in 2007 to promote the teaching of Chinese language and culture in central Indiana, is to facilitate collaborations between IUPUI and SYSU.

In recent years, IUPUI has developed several strategic initiatives with SYSU, including undergraduate dual degree programs in business, computer science, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, media arts and science, public affairs, and mathematics. Several academic programs at IUPUI also have student exchange programs with SYSU.

Students from the IU School of Medicine and the SYSU Zhongshan School of Medicine, for example, can complete clinical electives at the partner school.

IU also has active, university-wide partnerships with Peking University, Tsinghua University and Zhejiang University.

Business remains a highly sought-after area of study at IU for Chinese students. IU's Kelley School of Business, with degree programs on IU's campuses in Bloomington and Indianapolis, is consistently ranked highly by peer academics, corporate recruiters, business developers and business publications such as Bloomberg Businessweek, the Financial Times and U.S. News & World Report.

Kelley's undergraduate program in Bloomington was ranked No. 1 in a Bloomberg Businessweek survey of corporate recruiters. Last fall, the school received three No. 1 rankings in MBA student surveys by the publication: career services, teaching quality and student satisfaction.

The Kelley School offers undergraduate and graduate education programs to about 5,600 full-time students on its Bloomington campus and another 1,600 students on its Indianapolis campus. Enrollment in its Kelley Direct online MBA program -- which earlier this year was ranked third by U.S. News -- also is close to 1,000 students.

Its new Institute for Business Analytics, one of the first such institutes in the nation, supports academic programs that prepare students to solve challenging business problems using advanced analytics.

It was the second business school in the United States to include international components in its curriculum (it added international business classes in 1959) and has furthered its global reach through several new educational programs and initiatives.

The Kelley School has recently partnered with Zhejiang University in Hangzhou on summer exchange programs for students. The Kelley School at Indianapolis has partnered with Sun Yat-sen University on an undergraduate dual degree program.

In 2011, the National Science Foundation selected IU to lead an effort to link the China Education and Research Network, or CERNET, with Internet2 and other U.S. research and education networks, which is allowing researchers in both the U.S. and China to more easily collaborate and share research data.

The study of East Asia spans more than 20 departments and professional schools on the Bloomington campus, including the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, which recently marked its 50th anniversary; the Title VI-supported East Asian Studies Center; the Chinese Language Flagship program; and the IU-Australian National University Pan-Asia Institute.

IU's teaching and research activities in Asia will be core efforts of the new School of Global and International Studies. The university recently broke ground on a new four-story, 165,000-square-foot structure that will house the school, starting with the 2015-16 academic school year.

Reports as the trip progresses will be available at a new website, "Global Engagements and Partnerships," as well as the Global Engagements and Partnerships blog and through official IU social media channels on Facebook and Twitter.