A delegation from Nantong University (China) visited the Sankt Augustin campus to seal its partnership with the Bonn-Rhine-Sieg University of Applied Sciences, which has existed since 1997 and is thus our University's oldest partnership.
Nantong University in the Province of Jiangsu, the Chinese partner province of the German Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), was the first foreign university to seal a partnership with our University. This was in 1997. A delegation from Nantong has now visited Sankt Augustin to exchange ideas.
When the partnership agreement with Nantong University was signed 13 years ago, there were not many students in a position to go abroad. This has changed: over the past few years, the graduates of the Chinese partner university have taken part in the Master's degree programmes at the Department of Computer Science - after having conducted project work in this Department during their Bachelor's degree courses. German students have also visited the partner university to carry out project work.
At present, approximately 33,000 students are enrolled at Nantong University, which has developed from the former Technical University with the participation of several other universities. A major advantage is the fact that the Shanghai metropolis can now be reached over a bridge that was only completed in 2008.
The Chinese guests listened attentively as Prof. Dr Wiltrud Terlau, Vice-President for Internationalisation and International Cooperation, first of all presented the Bonn-Rhine-Sieg University of Applied Sciences and the international study programmes it is currently offering. Wang Weidong from the International Office of Nantong University then reported on the educational focuses of his University. He pointed out that the Chinese government was very interested in sending students abroad for their education and that his University wanted to cooperate with the Bonn-Rhine-Sieg University of Applied Sciences, above all in the area of engineering science.
At the end of the talks, the Vice-President of Nantong University made concrete suggestions on how to reinforce the present partnership. For example, it is possible to choose a specialisation from engineering science for a jointly drafted Bachelor's degree course. Within the framework of this study programme, Chinese students might complete the first two years of study at their home university and then - after having participated in a preparatory course that includes, among others, German classes - study at Sankt Augustin for the last two years. The introduction of a Master's degree course for advanced Chinese guest students was also under discussion. However, there are not only plans to establish exchange programmes for students; the lecturers of both universities will also be enabled to spend some time at the partner university.