On September 13th, the University of Electronic Science and Technology of China (UESTC) held a grand opening ceremony to welcome over 4900 Year 2020 undergraduates. They are the youngest UESTCers, ushering in their campus life. The ceremony was carried out both online and offline with two venues: the Qingshuihe Campus and the Shahe Campus.
University leaders and heads of all Schools and departments attended the ceremony, including Prof. Wang Yafei, Secretary of the Party Committee, Prof. Zeng Yong, President of UESTC, Academician Liu Shenggang, Prof. Xiong Caidong, Prof. Yang Xiaobo, Prof. Shen Xiaorong, Prof. Hu Haoquan, Prof. Peng Lan, Prof. Xu Hongbing, Prof. Hu Jun. The ceremony was presided over by Prof. Shen Xiaorong, Deputy Secretary of the Party Committee.
In his speech, Prof. Zeng Yong, on behalf of all the faculty, students and college staff, as well as Secretary Wang Yafei, extended warm welcome and sincere congratulations to the students, showing his gratitude to the students, their parents and high school teachers for their trust in UESTC. After introducing the basic information of the Year 2020 graduates, he recollected his school years, and said that starting campus life on his own in another place helped him to figure out his orientation and cultivated his independence. The ability to live independently will affect one’s willpower and the ability to make major decisions in life. While cultivating independence, students should also show their love for parents with “sweet words” and bright smiles to avoid potential problems resulted from generation gap.
Prof. Zeng Yong told the students that during the critical period of shaping their world view, outlook on life and values, it will be their lifelong treasure to develop friendship with those who accompany them every day without practical interests. Students should learn to get along with people of different backgrounds and personalities, manage to win respect from others when they enjoy equal rights without any pressure from administrative authority, and gain sincere admiration when helping others, tackling difficulties, and facing danger. Students are also supposed to establish prestige in forgiving others’ inappropriate words and deeds, and derive mental comfort from the humility and willingness of waiving their own interests for the sake of others. Most importantly, students should be kind-hearted, maintain personal integrity and show loyalty to their friends. This is the fundamental principle of conducting themselves. He hoped that the students would develop lifetime friendship during their campus life. Such everlasting friendship symbolizes the identification of basic values, tolerance and complementarity of differences in personality. It serves as the foundation for mutual trust and generates mental comfort and support.
Prof. Zeng Yong said that going to college is not only about acquiring professional knowledge and skills, but above all, students need to perceive, recognize, imagine and discover the meaning of life and their own unique orientation through traditional general education and stories recorded, pondered, and created by their predecessors. Life does not consist in uniformity and rigid targets, and no fixed standards will determine the success or failure of life. Social sciences such as scientific spirit, artistic aesthetics, innovative consciousness, economics, management and law are also an indispensable part of general education, which will jointly cultivate the comprehensive quality of students. It is necessary for students to pay special attention to the training of their listening, speaking, reading and writing skills and learn to interact with others. As future contributors to scientific and technological progress, innovation and entrepreneurship, the significance of their life consists in exploration, discovery and creation. Furthermore, it is incumbent on the students to create scientific, technological and commercial value for the well-being of the public and social progress by taking advantage of both their own wisdom and strength of their teams. Meanwhile, students are also supposed to revitalize national industries, contribute to the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation, publicize advanced knowledge, improve public welfare, and contribute to human civilization.
Prof. Zeng Yong showed that UESTC has always been committed to respecting students’ personality, liberating their inclinations, and supporting their enthusiasm for exploration and creation. Students should take the initiative to arouse and always maintain their curiosity, stay passionate for exploration, innovation and creation, unleash and exploit their potential. In terms of academic performance, it is crucial for the students to cultivate the ability to think independently and critically, raise their consciousness for inclusiveness, interdisciplinary quality and original creation, and develop their willingness and courage to conduct exploration and rise up to challenges regardless of authority and hardship. Such orientation characterizes the basic starting point of the reform of new engineering education and the “UESTC Scheme” for new engineering. Every student present is a participant and co-creator of the “UESTC Scheme” for new engineering. Their enthusiasm and wisdom will facilitate the upgrading of the “UESTC Scheme” and eventually they will benefit from it in return.
“Never follow paved paths, but blaze new trails.” “Please remember that students are driven by enthusiasm, curiosity, participation and ideals.” “Education does not mean indoctrination, but inspiration.” Those three sentences embodied Prof. Zeng Yong’s opinion on college education that he’d like to share with the faculties and students. He hoped that the students would develop kindness, integrity and courage, maintain their curiosity and enthusiasm, explore the meaning of life with an open mind, and embark on the journey of exploration, discovery and creation when they were in college. Teachers will do everything possible to help students with boundless care and professional quality. UESTC is their warm and reliable home.
Vice President Yang Xiaobo read out the decision to award scholarships to the Year 2020 undergraduates. Zeng Zhenhang and other 14 students were awarded the special scholarship for the “Elite Training Program”. Song Yicheng and other 8 students won the first-class scholarship for freshmen. 38 students, including Liang Xiaozhou, were awarded the second-class scholarship for freshmen, and 19 students, including Wang Yuhui, won the third-class scholarship for freshmen.
Prof. Song Jingkuan, a faculty representative and professor of the School of Computer Science and Engineering, hoped that the students would set clear goals for their life, stay true to their original aspirations, keep trying and make unremitting efforts in the course of campus life. By setting goals and taking actions, students would behave themselves. To be an interesting person, apart from professional skills, students should pay attention to soft power, which can sometimes affect one’s long-term development. In addition to pursuing professionalism, students should develop effective interpersonal skills through practice, and cultivate inclusiveness as well as empathy. To cherish lofty ideals, students should always bear in mind their family and homeland, assume responsibilities and make contributions. This is the most prominent feature of all UESTCers. It is of great significance for the students to carry forward the “spirit of scientists” of their predecessors and constantly overcome technical barriers in the context of unprecedented changes so as to serve the country earnestly while bearing in mind the bigger picture. It is teachers’ lifelong pleasure to welcome all elites and educate them. Therefore, it is wise of the students to take the initiative to communicate with their teachers, who will do their best to offer assistance and guidance.
Mr. Wang Donghui, a representative of UESTC alumni, chairman and founder of Ronglian Technology Group Co., Ltd., said that becoming a UESTCer is one of the most important starting points in students’ lives. Students should learn to “empty themselves” and “free themselves”. To “empty themselves” is to start afresh, have no distractions, and begin to enjoy their study and life on campus with pleasure so as to make full use of the four years in the prime of their youth. To “free themselves” is to follow their own inclinations, set goals and make decisions according to their real interests. Despite the complex and profound changes in the current international situation, curiosity, extensive reading and down-to-earth practice still serve as an important means for students to understand the world, cherish great ambitions, contribute to social progress and serve the country. It is pivotal for every student to stay healthy, spend more time on interpersonal communication and exercise, and serve the society as well as the motherland for five decades.
Liu Shoufeng, a Year 2017 undergraduate representative from the Glasgow College, said that UESTC offers a new starting point for everyone’s life. It will provide a first-class platform for all students to pursue their dreams and meet their expectations. The current international situation is more complex and changeable, posing a succession of new challenges. Therefore, it is time for UESTCers to seize the opportunity and make major contributions. Furthermore, it is important for the students to care for the development of UESTC, bear in mind national interests and cater to the trend of internationalization with dauntless courage and great responsibility. In this way, they are qualified to become pioneers of the times. Students should strengthen their self-recognition based on passion and struggle, figure out their self-value when making choices and expressing doubts, and live a meaningful life by shouldering responsibilities and obligations. Each generation has its distinctive missions. The students should cherish every day of their life at UESTC and the opportunities offered by this promising era. Upholding the spirit of “being realistic and broadminded”, the students will strive for their brilliant future and live up to the expectations of the times in the prime of their youth.
Feng Ziqian, a representative of the freshmen from the School of Information and Communication Engineering, said that those who do not seek shortcuts may succeed, and those who do not shrink from difficulties will make progress. This saying just epitomizes the efforts made by the students under the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. In this way, they have recorded their special memories with UESTC. He was full of curiosity upon his arrival at UESTC, and he was seized with the sense of belonging though he came alone. He was confident about the promising prospects of his future as well as the development of UESTC. On that day, he became a youngest UESTCer, which marked not only the moment for honor that he had always been longing for, but also the moment for shouldering great responsibility and mission. They will keep in mind and carry forward the spirit of “being realistic and broadminded”, strive for progress with unremitting efforts, and invigorate the country through science and technology.
On the ceremony, university leaders, academician, heads of all schools and departments adorned the freshmen representatives with university badges; meanwhile, other students also wore their badges on the chest. As college students and UESTCers in the new era, they will uphold the spirit of “being realistic and broadminded”, strengthen their ideals and beliefs, shoulder the mission of the times with courage, and aspire to become elites and embrace a brilliant future.
The song “Ode to the Motherland” brought a successful conclusion to the opening ceremony.
The ceremony was broadcast live through CCTV News Weibo, People’s Daily app, Xuexi.cn, Weibo on Campus and the CCTV channel account, official Weibo, Douyin, bilibili, Toutiao, Feishu and digital TV platform of UESTC. It has attracted wide attention from the faculties, students, alumni of UESTC, students’ parents and people from all walks of life. The ceremony was included in the most popular news on Weibo, ranking the 7th of its hotspot list with more than 130 million pageviews so far.
After watching the live broadcast, Mr. Han Kuitong, a parent of a freshmen from the School of Information and Communication Engineering, remarked that the complex international situation and the raging COVID-19 pandemic have endowed this year’s opening ceremony with special significance. The opening ceremony fully embodies UESTC’s concern for the motherland, the great responsibility of UESTC alumni and the lofty ideal of the freshmen. He believed that the students would have greater achievements and they are a new generation of young people who bear the hope of the nation. Bian Zepeng, a freshman from the School of Information and Software Engineering, said that the President gave an in-depth introduction of the upcoming campus life from a general perspective, pointed out the direction for them, and encouraged them to dedicate their youth to serving the urgent need of the country, and to contribute to the rejuvenation of the nation. In the days to come, he will concentrate on his study while exercising for both recreation and health, and at the same time get along well with his classmates, so that their friendship will last forever. Yang Yuchao, a freshman majoring in Applied Physics (Pilot Reform Program of Enrollment for Basic Subject) from the School of Physics, said that the inculcation of the teacher and the sincere exhortations of the seniors encouraged them to forge ahead in defiance of hardships. He also made an resolution to consolidate basic knowledge, stay deeply-rooted in science, serve the motherland, and receive education for the rise of China.
Translated by Xie Wenjuan, supervised by Long Mei.