Zhiyuan College
A stage for elites, A cradle of masters

1900, in order to impart traditional wisdom and western knowledge to students, endow them with statecraft and encourage them to solve practical problems, a highly selective special class was founded by Nanyang Public School (the school evolved into SJTU tens of years later). In the entrance examination, 42 students, including Huang Yanpei, Shao Lizi and Li Shutong, were selected by Sheng Xuanhuai–the founding father of Nanyang Public School. With Cai Yuanpei served as their senior professor, many of them flourished and became great masters who illuminated China’s history. Ten decades passed by, though the glory is still engraved in our heart, time and tide wait for no one. Not long ago, Qian Xuesen, one of our most famous alumni, asked a question bitterly and repeatedly on his deathbed: “why great masters are so hard to nurture for universities in our time?”

To develop the creative spirit of the special class and to respond to the question posed by Qian Xuesen, we established Zhiyuan College, a significant component of our elite education program. Born as a testing special area to nurture creative top-notch students, Zhiyuan College strives to provide a world-class education intellectively and spiritually for the outstanding students. We work industriously to assist them in acquiring knowledge, building strong sense of social commitment, maintaining zeal for science and enhancing the desire to seek truth from facts, thus make them future leaders in the applied science and theoretical engineering fields. While our society’s developing technology and economy bring about demand for top talents, our students can definitely meet the demand.

We have a dream, so we’ll spare no efforts to make it come true. To be the cradle of the leading elites of our time is the dream that Zhiyuan College always hold dear.

Zhang Jie
CAS member
Honorary Dean of Zhiyuan College