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Spring 2013  No.23
Tsinghua University Joint MPhil/PhD Established

In another pioneering move for postgraduate engineering education and academic exchange at HKUST, the School of Engineering has signed an agreement with the Graduate School at Shenzhen, Tsinghua University (THU), on their first joint MPhil/PhD program.

Dean of Engineering Prof Khaled Ben Letaief said that the partnership was part of the School's vision to build its Mainland and international presence through strategic alliances with top institutions. "This collaboration will go a long way in enhancing our future participation in research projects and activities in the Pearl River Delta region," he noted.

Students on the four-year PhD program will spend two years each at HKUST and THU. Those on the two-year MPhil will study for one year at each institution. Every student will have two faculty advisors, one from each university, and following graduation will become alumni of both institutions. The agreement was signed in November 2012 and the first cohort of students could be admitted as early as Fall 2013.

Other benefits of the joint program for students are wider learning opportunities and the chance to gain different cultural perspectives. It will also enhance the School of Engineering's drive for excellence and its endeavor to lead the way globally in the postgraduate educational experience it provides.

In the past few years, the School has actively sought partnerships with top institutions outside Hong Kong to build the multicultural nature of its postgraduate community. Agreements on joint PhD programs have included Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology(KAIST)in 2008, Pohang University of Science and Technology(POSTECH), Korea, in 2011, and Sharif University of Technology, Iran, earlier in 2012.

The Graduate School at Shenzhen, Tsinghua University, was jointly established by Shenzhen Municipal Government and Tsinghua University in 2000 and is one of the fastest-growing institutions in Asia-Pacific. The current Dean Prof Feiyu Kang is a HKUST Engineering School PhD graduate, receiving his doctorate in mechanical engineering in 1997.