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January 25, 2001 Concordia builds more ties with China



Rector Frederick Lowy

Rector Frederick Lowy.

Photo by Christian Fleury.

A delegation will travel to China on the next Team Canada trip to develop our partnerships in that country and get the word out about Concordia.

Rector Frederick Lowy, Vice-Rector Marcel Danis and Dean Martin Singer will be part of a delegation of about 300 Canadians, including Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, Premier Lucien Bouchard and eight other premiers. The trip takes place February 8 to 17.

For Dr. Lowy, it will be his second trip to China as Rector, and his third to Hong Kong.

“We have relationships with Chinese institutions going back 16 years,” he said, but added that much of this trip will be to make new friends, and “all four Faculties are involved.”

Fine Arts will be looking for an agreement with the Shanghai Film Studio and Academy of Chinese Traditional Arts. In fact, a screening of animated films has been arranged with the co-operation of the National Film Board of Canada that will showcase the work of Concordia graduates and faculty members.

The Faculty of Engineering and Computer Science will solidify agreements with Hunan University, Southeast University (Nanjing), and the Pulp and Paper Research Institute of China.

Dean Mohsen Anvari, of the John Molson School of Business, will join the trip in Beijing, where he will make a presentation about the Global Aviation MBA program, along with four Quebec aviation-related companies.

Arts and Science has the relationships of longest standing in China, and the current dean, Martin Singer, is a Sinologist, with a deep and passionate interest in the culture. He will meet with officials from City University of Hong Kong, Beijing-Concord College of Sino-Canada, an expanding network of private institutions, the Beijing Broadcasting Institute, Southeast University and Nanjing University.

Dr. Lowy will speak at an educational seminar in Beijing. It will give him a chance to promote Concordia, “which deserves to be much more widely known.”

In interviews leading up to the trip, Dr. Singer suggested that Canadian education, and universities in particular, play a critical role in Canada’s ongoing outreach to China.

Although its population is approaching 1.3 billion, China has a relatively small network of universities; as a result, limited classroom capacity leaves a large number of Chinese students without access to post-secondary education.

Dr. Singer said he expects to see an increase in the number of Chinese students seeking university education abroad. This should prove to be a boon to Canadian universities, which need more qualified students at the graduate level, particularly in the natural sciences and mathematics.

The Faculty of Arts and Science is also hoping to export its know-how in academic technology to international markets, and China has been identified as a prime opportunity.

The Team Canada project is being co-chaired by André Desmarais, CEO of Power Corp., and chair of the Canada-China Business Council.