News & Events
3rd International Engineering Education Forum Opens at Beihang
Release time:July 7, 2021 / Zang Mingming

From July 2 to 3, the 3rd International Engineering Education Forum, sponsored by Beihang University and co-organized by the School of General Engineering (SGE) / International Research Institute for Multidisciplinary Science (IRI), was held at Vision International Cultural Exchange Center.

A total of over 100 distinguished experts from the Ministry of Science and Technology of the People's Republic of China, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Olin College of Engineering, International Federation of Engineering Education Societies (IFEES), Tsinghua University, Peking University, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Nanjing University and other famous universities at home and abroad attended the forum.

With the theme "Tackling Grand Challenges with Interdisciplinary Science", the forum featured keynote speeches, round-table conference and free discussions, aiming to explore new patterns for international talent cultivation in a multidisciplinary context. The forum was hosted by Prof. Wen Dongsheng, Dean of SGE/IRI.

Zhao Gang, Vice Secretary of the Party Committee of Beihang University, delivered an English opening speech at the opening ceremony on the morning of July 3. He introduced the historical evolution of Beihang University, the current situation of its construction development and future goals, artificial intelligence, information technology, and intelligent manufacturing to inspire us to rethink how new engineering education can better cultivate students' multidisciplinary ability to solve complex issues.

Prof. Hans Jürgen Hoyer, Secretary General of IFEES /GEDC, delivered an online opening speech and expressed the blessings for the forum.

Prof. Richard Miller from MIT and Olin College of Engineering made a speech titled "Olin College, The Golden Course Initiative, and the Future of Higher Education", introducing the education practice of Olin College of Engineering and highlighting the importance of attitude, behavior, and motivation in engineering education.

Prof. Lin Jian from Tsinghua University also made a speech titled "The Construction of New Engineering Disciplines — Framework and Implementation". He noted that in the era when new economic development and industrial reform broke through the original discipline and industrial division, we should break through the mindset of traditional discipline, thus break through the original project definition, and surpass traditional engineering professions.

Prof. Song Jie from Peking University gave a speech entitled "International Engineering Education at Peking University Inspired by the Grand Challenges". She believed that sustainable development, safety, health, and happy life were major challenges of the 21st century. As the first Chinese university to join the “Grand Challenge Scholar Program” of the National Academy of Engineering, Peking University aimed to train students to solve major challenges in the 21st century.

Following that, Prof. Wen Dongsheng gave a speech titled "Exploration of New Engineering Education at Beihang University". He introduced the exploration and achievements of Beihang University and the School of General Engineering from the new perspective of engineering. He noted that innovation in interdisciplinary and global environments was an essential feature of new engineering, which required us to change our way of thinking from "being taught" to “learning actively”. Under such circumstances, the School of General Engineering would continue to explore effective ways of future engineering education and focus on cultivating students' ability to deal with complex problems in a rapidly changing world.

In the afternoon, Dr. Ulrich Teichler from the University of Kassel in Germany gave a keynote speech entitled "The Variety of Interdisciplinary Approaches in Engineering Education", emphasizing the importance of interdisciplinary, engineering natural science foundations in engineering education. He also pointed out that engineers should enhance their sense of responsibility and broadly expand their capabilities while cultivating the professional foundations.

The last part of the forum was hosted by Xu Haoqing, Vice Director of the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs of the Ministry of Science and Technology of the People's Republic of China. He said that the "Pioneer Project for an International Model School of Higher Education" was guided by the spirit of the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, with the goal of building world-class universities. It was jointly implemented by the Ministry of Science and Technology and the Ministry of Education, aiming to establish an international teaching experimental zone, adopt international advanced teaching and management models, and explore the innovation of teaching, scientific research, and management mechanisms.

Since 2018, the International Engineering Education Forum has been successfully held for two sessions, providing a forum for distinguished experts in engineering education to carry out international academic exchanges and discussions.

Reported by Sun Xiaoqian, Dong Lin, Tan Li and Li Mengyao

Photographed by Jin Hui and Zhang Keli

Reviewed by Wen Dongsheng

Edited by Jia Aiping

Translated by Zang Mingming

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