Tue, Jan 05, 2016 - Page 3 News List

Students criticize planned merger between schools

IMPRACTICAL:Driving from one campus to another would take at least two hours if the schools were merged, an instructor at Yang-Ming University said

By Wu Po-hsuan  /  Staff reporter

Students from Taipei’s National Yang Ming University hold placards criticizing what they said was a lack of consultation on the university’s planned merger with Hsinchu’s National Chiao Tung University yesterday.

Photo: Wu Po-hsuan, Taipei Times

The National Yang-Ming University Student Association yesterday urged the university to stop plans to merge with the Hsinchu-based National Chiao Tung University (NCTU), adding that both the faculty and students have yet to be informed about details of the proposed merger.

Taipei-based Yang-Ming University is known for its research in medicine, life sciences and biotechnology. NCTU is one of the nation’s top universities in advanced technologies, with its alumni dominating the nation’s computer, electronics and business sectors.

Representatives of the Yang-Ming University Student Association yesterday said they are against the deal “hashed out in a black box” and the university should stop enforcing the memorandum of understanding (MOU) it planned to sign with NCTU.

At a university hosted introductory session yesterday, association president Chen Jia-jing (陳佳菁) said that the Ministry of Education has proposed to integrate resources of different universities, and although Yang-Ming and NCTU can complement each other with their respective fortes in biomedicine and information technology, there are many issues that remain unresolved.

“Students and faculty have not been given any information related to the merger in the past six months,” Chen said. “We did not know the two universities had already signed an MOU. NCTU did not host an introductory session until the school had already approved the MOU at its school management meeting. Yang-Ming hosted a similar session today and plans to put the MOU to a vote at tomorrows management meeting.”

The association said that the merger would only be justifiable if the university conducted surveys among students and faculty members.

Kao Yi-hsuan (高怡宣), who teaches at Yang-Ming University’s biomedical imaging and radiological sciences department, said the merger should take place at the right time and place and with the right people.

“The nation is to hold a presidential election soon. Even if the merger plan can be submitted to the ministry before the election, it would not be approved until after the new president takes office on May 20,” Kao said.

Kao said that it would take at least two hours to drive between campuses if the two universities were merged, adding that issues such as these one can only be discussed after both universities have reached a consensus.

“The universities should not rush to merge,” he said.

Yang-Ming University president Liang Kung-yee (梁賡義) said that both schools have yet to finalize the merger and they have not set a specific timeline for it.

“We want to list the issue on the agenda for the school management meeting so that students and faculty can discuss it,” Liang said.

Liang also denied that the deal was worked out in a “black box,” adding that the university has sent e-mails to students, teachers and alumni in the past about the proposed merger.

Additional reporting by CNA

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