Nanyang Technological University (NTU) is celebrating the achievements of 360 Chinese government officials and industry professionals who are graduating from seven NTU Master's programmes and the prestigious Lien Fellows programme this year.
This includes 50 senior government officials who will be receiving their Master of Science in Managerial Economics and Master of Public Administration, dubbed "The Mayors' Class".
Held annually in different Chinese cities, the 9th China Convocation ceremony is held in Beijing, China's capital, for the first time. About 190 Chinese graduates will receive their degrees at the convocation ceremony held at the China National Convention Centre on Sep 13, 2014.
Seven established and emerging Chinese leaders from the prestigious Lien Ying Chow Legacy Fellowship programme will also receive their certificates during the ceremony. This includes a ministerial-level government official, Dr Han Fangming, the Vice Chairman of Foreign Affairs Committee of the National Committee of Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, who is also the guest speaker for the ceremony.
"NTU has long played a leading role in fostering close ties with China through our various China-focused programmes. Since 1992, NTU has been providing training to Chinese senior officials in diverse areas such as public administration, economic management, urban planning and the management of higher education institutions," said NTU President, Professor Bertil Andersson.
"The huge number of senior officials trained at NTU reflects the Chinese government's confidence in Singapore's public policy and administration, and the quality and effectiveness of the University's programmes. Today, our China-based graduates are growing into an important and influential group of decision-makers with established ties to Singapore. Looking ahead, NTU remains committed to fostering and maintaining strong ties with our alumni in China."
Professor Andersson said the new graduates can be proud that they are now alumni of a top global university, which is recognised as the fastest-rising Asian university in the world's top 50.
"NTU is ranked 41st in the world and 7th in Asia, and is also number one in the world for Industry Income & Innovation. As our newest graduates, our China-based graduates can be proud that their NTU degree is a valuable asset with NTU's rapid growth internationally," said Prof Andersson.
"In recent years, NTU has intensified efforts to promote academic exchanges and scientific research collaborations with top universities in Asia, including China, as well as in Western Europe and North America.
"NTU maintains deep and broad links with China's top universities, in particular, Peking University, Nanjing University, and Shanghai Jiao Tong University as well as Chinese Academy of Sciences. These partnerships cut across a wide variety of fields and the results have been very encouraging."
For example, NTU's ROSE Lab, set up jointly with Peking University, recently developed a new image recognition and search technology in collaboration with Tencent - the leading provider of comprehensive Internet services in China. This new technology is now available free online for mobile app developers on the popular WeChat platform, which has some 400 million users.
Mr Song Zhaohu, the valedictorian representing the Class of 2014, said he is proud to be an NTU graduate given its international standing and rankings.
"NTU, with its high quality of teaching and a curriculum that has combined the best of East and West within a multicultural context, has given us an international perspective as well as honed our strategic thinking," said the graduate from the Master of Science in Managerial Economics, who is working as a project manager at the China Aerospace Science & Industry Corporation.
"As my company is undergoing strategic transformation, a team of management personnel is needed who are familiar with the aerospace industry yet have an international perspective," Mr Song added. "Both theory and practical skills taught to us at NTU are very helpful, as I am able to apply all the knowledge I learnt in my daily job."
Mr Zou Geyin, the class representative from the third cohort of the Master of Education programme, said NTU has broadened his horizons and given him an international forward-thinking perspective which will be useful for him in his career.
"During our course, we were mentored by knowledgeable teachers, who taught us scientific research and how the various techniques can be employed in our daily work as educators," said Mr Zou.
The first NTU China Convocation was held at Qinhuangdao City in 2006. Since then, this highly-anticipated annual event has become a tradition for the university where the China-based graduates commemorate this special day with their loved ones and their alma mater.
To promote close fellowship among its alumni and strengthen their ties with the University, NTU has 44 overseas alumni associations including 30 in China.
Beijing was NTU's first alumni association in China and it has 1,850 alumni to date. There are now about 188,500 alumni in more than 140 countries. Of these, about 20,000 live and work across many regions in China.