On 5th November 2014, Nunzio Quacquarelli, founder and Managing Director of Quacquarelli Symonds, and Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director, QS Intelligence Unit were invited to meet Mr. Zhu Shan Lu, Chairman of Peking University Council.
Peking University is one of the most prestigious universities in mainland China. It was founded in 1898 as a replacement of the ancient GuoZiJian-the Imperial College, which is the highest educational administration in feudal China. Ever since its foundation, Peking University has consistently played a leading role in forming progressive thoughts for China and have been influential in many major Chinese events in history, including China’s New Culture Movement, May Fourth Movement, just to name a few.
Nowadays, Peking University has been widely recognised as China’s top university in many different domestic and international universities rankings. For example, Peking University was ranked No. 57 in the 2014 QS World University Ranking, No.2 in QS BRICS Universities Ranking, and No. 8 in QS Asian University Ranking.
Peking University is located on the former site of Qing Dynasty royal gardens and retains Chinese-style landscaping as well as many traditional buildings. It is known for having one of the most beautiful campuses in mainland China.
(The beautiful campus of Peking University)
It is not the first time that QS leaders have visited Peking University. Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director, QS Intelligence Unit has met President Wang EnGe and other senior leaders of Peking University a few times before at Peking University. Dr. Christina Yan Zhang was also invited to join universities presidents, vice-chancellors from more than 20 countries in May 2014 to participate in a high level summit hosted by Peking University on the future of cultivating innovative talents around the world.
The way Dr. Christina Yan Zhang got to know Chairman Zhu Shan Lu was a bit unusual. At a previous meeting with senior leaders of Peking University in June 2014, Dr. Christina Yan Zhang met an old gentleman who came downstairs to the VIP meeting room to check if the room was available. Christina said Hi to the old gentleman without knowing who he was. The old gentleman asked Christina if the room was available for meeting now. Christina said unfortunately not, because she was asked to stay in the room for a meeting with senior leaders of Peking University. Christina introduced herself and QS, as one of the world’s top 3 most influential world university rankings, to the old gentlemen and gave him her business card. Interestingly enough, the old gentleman warmly welcomed the presence of Dr. Christina Yan Zhang to Peking University and showed strong interest in the work of QS.
He said to Dr. Christina Yan Zhang that he would like to see Peking University working closely with QS to implement the UN’s millennium Goal to develop universities to suit the future needs of the world. The old gentleman kindly insisted that Dr. Christina Yan Zhang to stay in the VIP meeting room to wait for her hosts in the university for meeting, while he turn around and asked a young gentleman standing behind to find an alternative meeting room nearby. The old gentleman was very much enjoying talking to Christina that he extended his personal invite to get other senior leaders of QS to visit Peking University soon to discuss opportunities for collaboration. Throughout the process, this old gentleman did not introduce himself to Christina at all. Out of curiosity, Christina asked the two waitresses standing outside the VIP rooms who the old gentleman was. The two waitress told Christina that he was Chairman Zhu Shan Lu, the No. 1 leader in Peking University (more important than President Wang Engge) who enjoyed the same political rank as the Chinese Minister of Education). That is how the two get to know each other.
When meeting again, Chairman Zhu Shao Lu thanked Dr. Christina Yan Zhang for keeping her promise and brought the founder of QS to Peking University for discussion on collaborations.
Unlike Christina, it is the first time that Nunzio Quacquarelli, founder of QS visited this top university in China. Nunzio was very grateful towards Chairman Zhu for inviting him to visit Peking University. He started talking about his education experience as a bachelor student of Cambridge University and started to praise Peking University for having such beautiful campus which reminded him of his great university time study in Cambridge. Chairman Zhu Shanlu thought very highly of the work QS has been doing over the decades to assist the international strategy of universities worldwide through a wide range of data-driven services and research.
(Nunzio Quacquarelli, founder and Managing Director of Quacquarelli Symonds, and Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director, QS Intelligence Unit, and Mr. Zhu Shan Lu, Chairman of Peking University Council met to discussed a wide range of potential partnership opportunities between two organisations.)
The meeting lasted for more than one hour, both leaders enjoyed the meeting too much that Chairman Zhu was half an hour late for his following meeting. Vice President Prof. Li Yan Song, Dr. Zheng Ru Qing，Deputy Director, Office Of International Relations, Dr. Yan Chun Hua, Deputy Registrar, and other senior leaders of Peking University also participated in the meeting.
(A group photo of all the leaders from QS and Peking University who participated in the meeting. From Left to right: Dr. Guo Cong Bing, Deputy Director, Office of the Chairman& President, Peking University; Prof. Li Yan Song, Vice President, Peking University, Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director, QS Intelligence Unit; Nunzio Quacquarelli, founder and Managing Director, QS; Mr. Zhu Shan Lu, Chairman of Council, Peking University; Dr. Yan Chun Hua, Deputy Registrar; Dr. Zheng Ru Qing, Deputy Director, Office Of International Relations)
A wide range of partnership opportunities have been discussed and agreed at the meeting. Both sides are very pleased with the outcome of the meeting.
Mr. Zhu Shan Lu, Chairman of Peking University Council also presented a gift from Peking University to Nunzio Quacquarelli, founder and Managing Director of Quacquarelli Symonds, and Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director, QS Intelligence Unit to thank QS for the visit.
(Mr. Zhu Shan Lu, Chairman of Peking University Council gave the gift to Nunzio Quacquarelli, founder and Managing Director of QS, and Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director, QS Intelligence Unit)
(Nunzio Quacquarelli, founder and Managing Director of Quacquarelli Symonds, and Mr. Zhu Shan Lu, Chairman of Peking University Council holding hands together in the air, aim to build a close partnership between QS and Peking University. )