Both schools place a strong emphasis on experiential science education.
They also share a similar passion for research collaboration between students and faculty.
So when leaders from University of Michigan-Dearborn’s College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters (CASL) sought to forge a partnership with a prestigious international university, China University of Geosciences (CUG) seemed like a perfect match.
“Their university’s emphasis on the connection between education and geology, natural resources and environment, and their location in the world’s largest industrial economy meshes perfectly with our own focus on engaged learning and interdisciplinary inquiry, and our own unique historical ties to industry,” said CASL Dean Martin Hershock.
CUG leaders felt the same way about UM-Dearborn, so both parties agreed on June 25 to partner on various academic initiatives. It marks the first graduate academic partnership for CASL outside of North America, and campus leaders expect the agreement to boost enrollment numbers and study abroad opportunities.
UM-Dearborn plans to host CUG undergraduate students as part of a visiting program that launches this fall. CUG students can study at UM-Dearborn for one year, then return to China for the duration of their undergraduate work.
CUG students also can participate in a 3+2 program, in which they complete three years of undergraduate coursework in China, then two years at UM-Dearborn. After five years, they can earn a bachelor’s and master’s degree.
CUG students are encouraged to enroll in UM-Dearborn’s Master of Science in environmental science (M.S.E.S.) program, as the program closely fits within the CUG curriculum.
“Opening this opportunity is a very important next step for our campus and our relationship with China,” said UM-Dearborn Chancellor Daniel Little.
CUG, which has campuses in Beijing and Wuhan, is home to more than 25,000 full-time students and is regarded as one of China’s top universities in regard to geosciences.
That academic prestige is what inspired Sonia Tiquia-Arashiro to pursue a partnership with CUG. And while a majority of CUG students won’t arrive at UM-Dearborn until fall 2015, excitement among China students continues to build.
“We are expecting some really great students to come from this university,” said Tiquia-Arashiro, director of the M.S.E.S. program. “Our students and faculty are sure to benefit from this unique partnership.”