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Trinity Participates in China Education Expo 2016

Posted on 25 October 2016

This month, Ireland was given “country of honour” status at China Education Expo 2016, a prestigious education exhibition in Beijing.  Minister for Education Richard Bruton, senior representatives from 19 higher education institutes, including a delegation from Trinity and staff from Enterprise Ireland, visited China this month.   

As part of Trinity’s activities in China, Trinity Provost and President, Dr Patrick Prendergast, visited one of China’s top universities, Peking University (PKU) for discussions on a research collaboration on ageing.  China’s ageing population is changing rapidly. Over the past 27 years it has doubled from 7% to 14%. 

Trinity Provost & President, Dr Patrick Prendergast said: “Ageing is a global challenge and finding solutions requires innovation and collaboration across national boundaries. Trinity leads The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA) and together with PKU we can share our research and experience to our mutual benefit and global significance.”  

TILDA is part of a global family of 14 national longitudinal studies on ageing.   They include China, US, Brazil, India, England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Mexico, South Korea and Japan.  It is planned that TILDA will collaborate with the Centre for Healthy Ageing and Family Studies at PKU. Trinity is also a leading university in geriatric medicine and age-related health care. It is therefore well placed internationally to lead on education and training in this area.  The collaboration will build on other research and student mobility agreements Trinity has with the top university.

Trinity engages closely with China through its Centre for Asian Studies. The university has a representative in China, and staff regularly travel between the two countries to recruit students. Like all Irish universities, they attend fairs, deal with education agents and actively engage in social media. Trinity expects to have about 250 Chinese undergraduate, postgraduate and PhD students this year.

Sinéad Ryan, Director of Internationalisation at Trinity says, “Ireland has a relatively low a profile in China,” she says, “so the country-of-honour status represents a great opportunity to raise Ireland in the Chinese consciousness.”

Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton said: “It is important to acknowledge Trinity’s strategic engagement in China especially in the context of the just launched international education strategy.  Such collaborations are important developments in promoting partnerships with China. They foster a deep engagement with China which is vital for our students. Trinity as a world class educational institution continues to attract students of the highest calibre.”
During the course of the Irish Government mission to China, the Provost gave a speech on “Innovation and entrepreneurship and the role of the university” at Schwarzman College, Tshingua University.
The Provost also visited the “Water Cube” National Aquatic Centre in Beijing which was made possible by research at Trinity led by physicist, Emeritus Professor Denis Weaire.  The award winning design of the iridescent bubble wrapped box structure combines molecular science, architecture and phenomenology.

Dr Prendergast said it was the most publicly recognisable example of the impact of Irish research and innovation in China.

Pictured above are: Dr CHEN Xu, Chairperson of Tsinghua University Council and Trinity Provost who signed a Memorandum of Understanding and a Student Exchange Agreement renewal. They are joined by members of the Global Relations team.

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