Visit of US Ambassador Nicholas Burns and Delegation to Shanghai Jiao Tong University

International Affairs Division 2023-09-24 718


On September 14th, Mr. Nicholas Burns, the US Ambassador to China, and his delegation paid a visit to Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU). President of SJTU, Ding Kuilin, welcomed the guests in the conference room of the new administrative building on the Minhang campus. Also in attendance were Scott Walker, the US Consul General in Shanghai, Deputy Consul General Daniel Delk, and SJTU Vice President Xi Lifeng.


Ding Kuilin extended a warm welcome to Nicholas Burns and his delegation and provided an overview of the university. He pointed out that SJTU has a long-standing tradition of internationalization and was known as the "Oriental MIT" as far back as the 1930s. Even before formal diplomatic relations between China and the United States were established, SJTU took the lead in forming a delegation of Chinese university representatives to visit the US, opening the door to higher education exchanges between the two countries. In the 21st century, SJTU collaborated with the University of Michigan to establish the Shanghai Jiao Tong University-University of Michigan Joint Institute, pioneering transnational dual-degree higher education programs in China. SJTU also has multiple international colleges and exchange programs, such as the USC-SJTU Institute of Cultural and Creative Industry, and has earned a strong international reputation for its high-quality education. Ding Kuilin emphasized the importance of joint efforts for sustainable development in the international community and expressed hope that, with the Ambassador's support, both sides could enhance communication and understanding, fostering more educational and cultural exchanges. He also looked forward to increased cooperation between American universities and SJTU and welcomed more American students to study and live at SJTU.

Nicholas Burns expressed that his visit to the SJTU campus and the SJTU-University of Michigan Joint Institute left a very positive impression on him. The University of Michigan is one of the best universities in the United States, and the students at the SJTU-University of Michigan Joint Institute are of high quality. He reflected on the challenges posed by the pandemic, particularly the situation of students from different time zones attending classes online, and stressed the importance of enhanced educational cooperation between China and the United States to deepen mutual understanding.

During their visit, Nicholas Burns and his delegation toured the SJTU-University of Michigan Joint Institute, visited the Tang Junyuan Student Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center, and interacted with students on topics related to career planning, cross-cultural education, Sino-US educational cooperation, cultural exchange, and the mission of young people.

Personnel from the US Consulate General in Shanghai, Luo Peng, Director of SJTU's Office of International Cooperation and Exchange, Chen Qianbin, Dean of the SJTU-University of Michigan Joint Institute, Yang Ming, Secretary of the Party Committee of the SJTU-University of Michigan Joint Institute, Zhang Weimin, Dean of the SJTU-USC Institute of Cultural and Creative Industry, and Wu Jiannan, Dean of the School of International and Public Affairs, as well as other relevant departments and college leaders and students from the SJTU-University of Michigan Joint Institute, also participated in the event.

SJTU maintains close cooperation with American universities and has established substantive collaborations with over 60 American universities. It has conducted in-depth cooperation with universities such as Yale University and Cornell University, launched dual-degree programs with more than 10 universities, including Northwestern University, the University of Southern California, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and initiated student exchange programs or summer programs with nearly 20 universities, including Cornell University, Johns Hopkins University, and the University of Maryland.