An alliance has been launched in Beijing in an attempt to advance China’s strategic plan for innovation.
Members of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Education Alliance of China include 137 universities and 50 enterprises.
Initiated by Tsinghua University, the alliance aims to build a platform for universities to share their experience in innovation and entrepreneurship, deepen educational reform and nurture students’ innovative and entrepreneurship spirit.
Tsinghua announced its proposal for the alliance on April 15 and was supported by many other universities and enterprises, said Qiu Yong, Tsinghua’s president.
Innovation and entrepreneurship education is an important trend in the development of higher education in the 21st century and also an urgent need in China, Qiu said.
A majority of the new alliance’s members are key educational institutions, including Peking University, Tsinghua University, Zhejiang University and Harbin Institute of Technology.
Duan Xianzhong, vice-president of Huazhong University of Science and Technology in Wuhan, Hubei province, said, “We have added innovation and entrepreneurship content to our curricula and also introduced special courses.”
Yan Jianhua, deputy Party chief of Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, said, “Innovation and entrepreneurship education cannot guarantee a big fortune, but will inspire the students’ spirit.”
The university, one of the leaders in innovation and entrepreneurship education in China, began exploring this form of education in 1999, selecting 60 students each year for entrepreneurship training.
“Twenty percent of graduates from the classes have started their own businesses,” said Wei Jiang, a professor at the university.
Zhang Haixia, a professor at Peking University specializing in microelectronics, launched an annual international contest in 2007 for applicants involved in nanotechnology and microtechnology.
Zhang believes education in innovation and entrepreneurship will inspire students’ enthusiasm and nurture their abilities.