“Diversity is the future of education. Distinctiveness will be a criterion for good educational institutions,” said Prof Lin Jianhua, former President of Peking University and founding director of its centre for future education management research, during his lecture at UIC on 27 November.

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Before the lecture, UIC President Prof Tang Tao awarded Prof Lin Jianhua a certificate to appoint him as UIC’s first Distinguished Adjunct Professor of Chinese Culture and Society.

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President Tang Tao (right) awards Prof Lin Jianhua a certificate to appoint him as
UIC’s first Distinguished Adjunct Professor of Chinese Culture and Society

Prof Lin Jianhua then shared his insights into China’s higher education and its significant achievements over the past 40 years.

He pointed out that the gross enrolment ratio of China’s higher education will soon reach 50%.

However, higher quality and diversified education is still urgently demanded.

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Prof Lin addresses a full hall of audience

The key to future education is to unlock the potential of students, according to Prof Lin, adding that universities must change the traditional instruction mode that only focuses on the impartment of knowledge, and instead, place students’ growth at the centre.

Prof Lin believes that universities should open the boundaries regarding fields of study as well as the boundaries for learning in addition to the schools.

By synergising resources of universities, society and enterprises, as well as by integrating learning and doing, future-oriented education can provide students extraordinary learning and growth experience.


Prof Lin continued that a liberal arts education is what modern education needs to cultivate high-calibre creative talents. Prestigious universities in the world, including Peking University, Stanford University and Yale University in the US, are exploring their own modern liberal arts education.

Prof Lin Jianhua also heaped praise on the liberal arts education advocated by UIC, which strives to foster well-rounded whole persons with a deep understanding of Chinese culture and an international vision.

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A student raises a question during the Q and A session

Later in the afternoon, Prof Lin had a discussion with UIC’s Vice President (Academic Affairs) Prof Chen Zhi and some faculty members to learn about the college’s Whole Person Education, campus culture and graduate development. He shared his views on university education referring to his experience at Peking University.

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Prof Lin Jianhua is Professor of Chemistry. Other than his presidential term in Peking University, he served as President of Chongqing University and President of Zhejiang University.

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Reporter: Deen He
Photographers: Ben Wen, Covee Wang
Editors: Samuel Burgess, Lauren Richardson
(from MPRO)