China and the United States further collaborative efforts with the construction of a new jointly owned university in Shanghai.
New York University (NYU) teamed up with East-China Normal University (ECNU) to create a new liberal arts and science college, NYU Shanghai. NYU Shanghai will be an independent entity and the first university operated by both China and the United States.
According to English News, NYU President John Sexton said that the two universities seek to develop the joint venture into one of the world’s finest comprehensive universities. The curriculum will allow undergraduate students to study humanities and social and natural sciences before locking in on one major. With a faculty student ratio of one to eight, Yu Lizhong, president of ECNU said the programs at NYU Shanghai will feature English lectures and small classes to encourage open discussions.
The campus being constructed in Lujiazui financial and trade zone in Shanghai’s Pudong area will accommodate about 3,000 students and is expected to open for the Fall of 2013. According to English News, the university will recruit faculty members from around the world including NYU and ECNU.
According to Wall Street Journal, New York University has been making moves to increase its international presence in recent years. NYU has opened campuses in London and Abu Dhabi and will offer students of NYU Shanghai the option of studying at one of their other campuses for up to three semesters.
The agreement between NYU and ECNU for this new university is not the first time these two forces have teamed up. According to the Wall Street Journal, NYU has had a study abroad site in Shanghai at ECNU since 2006.
This joint venture is the second one of its’ type. According to English News, the first university operated by two countries was the University of Nottingham Ningbo, China, which was co-established by the U.K.-based University of Nottingham and Zhejiang Wanli Education Group-University.
What will these types of academic mergers mean for the future of education and international relations? Will these ventures create beneficial bridges between countries?