Four government-funded universities in central and southern Taiwan formally launched a unit yesterday to integrate their resources and jointly nurture talent.
The unit, named the Comprehensive University System of Taiwan, will be run by National Cheng Kung University (NCKU) in Greater Tainan, National Sun Yat-Sen University in Greater Kaohsiung, National Chung Hsing University in Greater Taichung and National Chung Cheng University in Chiayi County.
The aim of the unit is to integrate educational resources and collaborate on research and development, library information, international affairs, intellectual property and sustainable management, among other fields, the schools said in a statement.
At the inauguration ceremony, NCKU president Hwung Hwung-hweng (黃煌煇) announced that Paul Chu (朱經武), an internationally renowned pioneer in the field of superconductivity, would serve as the unit’s honorary chancellor.
President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) praised Chu’s decision to return to serve his alma mater, NCKU, without pay.
Chu’s success in helping to improve the academic ranking of the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology during his tenure there as school president shows that he is not only an accomplished researcher, but also a management expert, Ma said at the opening ceremony.
Ma also said his administration would continue to push educational reforms to help globalize the nation’s schools and increase the country’s competitiveness.
Chu, who is also an academic in the field of mathematics and physical science at Academia Sinica, said he took up the job because he was grateful and wanted to give back to the country where he was raised.
He said he hoped the new unit would be a driver for the improvement and development of education in Taiwan and that the four participating schools would become world-class universities.
Chu, 71, and Chinese American physicist Wu Maw-kuen (吳茂昆), who was also raised in Taiwan, made a groundbreaking discovery in the field of superconductivity in 1987.
Chu has received many awards and honors for his work in physics and is the founding director of the Texas Center for Superconductivity at the University of Houston.