2023 China-ASEAN Education Cooperation Week | Successful Annual Conference of China Campus Network (CCN)
The Annual Conference of China Campus Network (CCN) was grandly held at Guizhou University, School of Management on August 29th as part of the 2023 China-ASEAN Education Cooperation Week. This year’s conference marked the first gathering of the network in three years following the COVID-19 pandemic. It focused on summarizing the practices and explorations conducted by the network and its member universities in the field of international students studying in China over the past three years. Additionally, discussions were held to explore the direction and plans for the development of international student enrollment in China during the post-pandemic era.
The conference was chaired by Professor Gu Jianzheng, former dean of the International Education College at Harbin Institute of Technology. It was attended by Professor Zhou Shaoqi, Vice President of Guizhou University; Professor Yang Junjie, Vice President of Shanghai Dianji University; Mr. Yu Shucheng, President of China Campus Network (CCN); Mr. Zhou Yong, Executive Vice President; Ms. Yang Jingsi, Deputy Secretary-General; and Mr. Zhu Jinping, along with other leaders from the International Education Colleges of member universities and professionals responsible for enrollment, teaching, and administration, among others. More than a hundred participants from partner institutions in countries including Russia, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, and others also took part in the conference.
Mr. Yu Shucheng, President of China Campus Network (CCN), delivered the first speech . He extended a warm welcome to the distinguished guests and expressed heartfelt gratitude to Guizhou University for their warm reception. Mr. Yu pointed out that the network has consistently implemented three core strategies: “scale,” “quality,” and “development.” They have made significant progress in the field of foundation education for international students coming to China and have become one of the largest unofficial self-funded foundation education institutions in China.
In the face of the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic over the past three years, China Campus Network (CCN)’s secretariat has worked closely with member universities, providing mutual support and actively responding to the situation. This has demonstrated the unity and teamwork spirit within the network. Mr. Yu emphasized that in the complex international situation and evolving global landscape following the pandemic, the network should unite closely and collectively address new opportunities and challenges in international student enrollment in China. This includes closely aligning with the national macro-level strategic deployment for international student education in China, carefully analyzing the trends in international education, and promoting the development of foundation education with high quality and standards.
Furthermore, the network should assist CCN member universities in advancing their internationalization processes and collectively address future challenges. Strengthening communication among member institutions and seeking opportunities for sharing network cooperation practices and future mutual development should also be a priority.
As one of the founding members of the network and the host of this year’s annual conference, Professor Zhou Shaoqi, Vice President of Guizhou University, delivered a welcome address at the conference. He extended a warm welcome to all the distinguished guests and offered hearty congratulations on the conference’s convening.
Professor Zhou introduced Guizhou University’s commitment to open education and its continuous efforts in promoting international exchange and cooperation. The university has achieved significant milestones in the internationalization of higher education and holds designations such as the Ministry of Education’s foreign aid base, the Ministry of Science and Technology’s international scientific cooperation base, a Chinese government scholarship institution, and a recipient of the International Chinese Teacher Scholarship. Additionally, the university actively participates in international organizations such as SEAMEO (Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization), AUN (ASEAN University Network), and EPU (Eurasian-Pacific Uninet). Since 2008, the university has been organizing the “China-ASEAN Education Cooperation Week” series of activities for 14 consecutive years.
Professor Zhou emphasized that the university has always attached great importance to the education of international students studying in China, especially those from ASEAN countries. He expressed the hope that Guizhou University can deepen its cooperation with the network and with the network’s support admit more outstanding graduates from CCN’s international preparatory programs. This collaboration aims to enhance the high-quality development of the university’s international student enrollment efforts and raise the level of international education. He also expressed the desire to work hand in hand with the alliance to make the “Study in China” brand bigger and stronger, achieving mutual success and a shared vision.
The 20th National Congress of the Party has put forward higher requirements for studying in China in the new era. General Secretary Xi Jinping emphasized during the fifth collective study of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee that active participation in global education governance and the vigorous promotion of the “Study in China” brand construction should be pursued. Over the past three years marked by the pandemic and a complex and ever-changing international situation, the Secretariat of the Network has remained at the forefront, standing firm alongside member universities and overseas partners, adhering to the principles while innovating, actively exploring ways and methods to overcome difficulties, and continuously promoting the high-quality development of studying in China. Tianjin University, Xi’an Jiaotong University, and Guangxi Normal University, three member universities of the network, shared their respective practices, achievements, challenges, and prospects in the field of studying in China at the conference.
Professor Li Qiang, Dean of the International Education College of Tianjin University, in his speech on “Striving to Create a New Situation in the Study in China Work of the New Era,” shared the rich experience of Tianjin University as one of the oldest universities for international students in China and a founding member of China Campus Network (CCN) . He particularly highlighted the university’s practical exploration and achievements in promoting high-quality development in the face of the three-year pandemic and the new directions.
Ji Ting, Vice-Dean of the International Education College of Xi’an Jiaotong University, in her speech on “Exploration and Practice of New Forms of Universities in the Context of the New Technological Revolution and the Transformation of World Higher Education,” shared Xi’an Jiaotong University’s efforts and accomplishments as one of the earliest institutions in China to cultivate Chinese government scholarship international students. She discussed their work in exploring new paradigms for international talent development in the new era, interdisciplinary development, educational openness, and international student management and development.
Professor Li Dongmei, Dean of the International Cultural & Education College of Guangxi Normal University, in her speech on “Practical Exploration of Building the Brand of Studying in China by Local Universities,” shared the work and achievements of Guangxi Normal University, a local university located in Guilin which is a world-class tourist and a nationally renowned historical and cultural city. She discussed their efforts in studying in China and international innovation cooperation.
The Secretariat of the Network has engaged in extensive exploration and experimentation in various areas such as global markets and branding, foundation education systems, and international talent ecology cooperation. They have accumulated a wealth of experience and faced numerous challenges. Particularly over the past three years during the pandemic. The Secretariat has steadfastly held its ground in the field of foundation education, continuously exploring and building values of foundation. Ms. Yang Jingsi, Deputy Secretary-General of the Network summarized their work from 2017 to 2023 at the conference and explained the strategic focus for the Network in 2024 and beyond. She pointed out that China has now become the world’s second-largest economy by GDP and the third most popular destination for international students. Facing opportunities and adjustments brought about by international situations such as the pandemic, digitization, globalization, and regionalization. China Campus Network (CCN) has consistently anchored itself on three core strategic points: “scale”, “quality”, and “development”.
In terms of scale, from 2017 to 2023, the global enrollment scale reached 3,725 students, attracting high-quality foundation students from over ten countries, including Russia, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Mexico, and Uzbekistan, to study foundation programs at the CCN IFP Centres of Member Universities. The Secretariat of the Network has developed global channels, collaborating with nine member universities to create over 20 UEA (University- Enterprise Alliance) programs enrolling over 1,000 students. They have also innovated with “Government-led Initiative, University-Enterprise Cooperation” order-based talent development model and partnered with seven member universities on 15 Mexican government order-based talent development cooperation project, enrolling nearly 150 students.
Regarding quality, the Network has consistently adhered to the “Five Unification” principle in the construction of the foundation education system, deepening the CCN International Foundation Programme (IFP), and continually exploring digital upgrades. They have successfully established the CCN International Borderless Campus (IBC), achieving digitized management and services for the entire foundation study process – teaching, learning, assessment, and management. This preparation sets the stage for the digital development of the CCN International Foundation Programme system in the post-pandemic era.
In terms of development, the Network relies on the “Belt and Road” talent development University-Enterprise Alliance platform. They explore innovative entrepreneurship education pathways in the Digital Economy era through cooperation with Alibaba and cultivate international talent reserves for Chinese brands’ internationalization through collaboration with emerging overseas brands. They also collaborate with international industry associations to create customized cooperation projects for industry talent development. Ms. Yang stated that in the post-pandemic era, the Network will continue to focus on these three core strategic points, persist in market development and product innovation, empower localization through digitization and continually build the core competitiveness of the CCN International Foundation Programme. They will further develop an ecosystem for international talent cultivation and development through university-enterprise and inter-university cooperation.
IFP is the foundation of the Network. In the construction of the foundation study system, IFP Centers at Member Universities have carried out extensive and in-depth teaching practices and explorations in collaboration with the Network Secretariat, undertaking significant responsibilities and playing key roles. During the conference, Ms. Li Jing, in charge of the CCN International Foundation Center at Tianjin University, and Ms. Xi Jingqian, specializing in teaching Chinese for Academic Purposes for Mathematics at the CCN International Foundation Center of Northwestern Polytechnical University shared their practical experiences and reflections within the CCN International Foundation Education System.
Ms. Li Jing, as the Director of the Foundation Education Department at Tianjin University’s International Education College and in charge of the CCN International Foundation Center shared the advantages of the CCN International Foundation Education System from three aspects: high-quality student sources, standardized product solutions, and reserve development of the teaching staff. In the landscape of foundation education for Chinese government scholarship students, Tianjin University as a leading institution has explored and practiced the value of differentiating CCN foundation education through self-funded foundation education, alongside CSC (Chinese Government Scholarship) foundation education.
Ms. Xi Jingqian, growing from General Chinese teaching to now being the backbone of teaching Chinese for Academic Purposes for Mathematics at Northwestern Polytechnical University CCN International Foundation Center, he shared experiences and insights gained from teaching practices using CCN’s self-developed Chinese language textbooks for the Foundation Programme. He used CCN’s Chinese for Academic Purposes in Mathematics teaching materials as an example to analyze the advantages of CCN’s self-developed teaching materials. Chinese for Academic Purposes is a critical subject in the CCN Foundation Programme, serving as a key link in empowering students to transition from General Chinese learning to specialized subject learning. CCN’s Chinese for Academic Purposes teaching materials play an important role in the growth of basic Chinese language teachers into teachers of Chinese for Academic Purposes.
Over the course of the pandemic years, the Network’s global representative offices have been at the forefront facing enormous pressure. They encountered challenges such as declining economic capacity of students’ families, issues related to student mobility due to China’s anti-pandemic policies and changes in the competitive landscape of various countries. However, CCN Local Offices from around the world did not back down. They persevered, continued to promote the CCN brand, and wholeheartedly supported the implementation of online foundation programme and degree programs in China. Some even innovated against the odds. Finally, in 2023, they witnessed the dawn of students returning to China. During the conference, the heads of the Network’s global market teams presented reports on their respective market activities.
俄罗斯是联盟最早开拓的海外市场，目前也是预科最大的生源国，CCN俄罗斯CEO Mikhal Parshin先生在会上全面介绍了俄罗斯市场的情况，分享了CCN俄罗斯在本地市场已经构建的全方位的合作体系，这将为未来的可持续发展奠定坚实的基础。我们期待看到更多的优秀的俄罗斯同学进入CCN预科，进入CCN成员高校学习。
Russia was the first overseas market explored by the Network and is currently the largest source of foundation students. Mr. Mikhal Parshin, CEO of CCN Russia, provided a comprehensive overview of the Russian market, sharing the all-encompassing cooperation system CCN has established in the local market. This lays a solid foundation for future sustainable development. We look forward to seeing more outstanding Russian students joining CCN foundation programs and enrolling in member universities.
Dr. Chen Yulan, Director of CCN Indonesia and a successful alumnus of studying in China has introduced the situation in the Indonesian market. She shared the challenges and opportunities that CCN Indonesia has experienced in local brand promotion. It is believed that with the efforts of CCN Indonesia, more Indonesian students will be attracted to join CCN International Foundation Programme, nurturing more outstanding alumni for Indonesia-China exchanges and sustainable cooperation.
CCN泰国CEO Naren Thongkaow先生也为大家介绍了泰国市场的情况，分享了CCN泰国团队在当地开展CCN国际预科项目品牌推广与学生服务方面的实践与经验。期待通过共同努力，帮助更多优秀的泰国同学来华留学，选择CCN预科，选择CCN成员高校！
Mr. Naren Thongkaow, CEO of CCN Thailand also provided insights into the Thai market and shared the practical experiences and expertise of CCN Thailand in promoting the CCN International Foundation Programme and student services in the local context. We hope that through collective efforts, more outstanding Thai students will come to study in China, choose CCN foundation programmes, and select CCN member universities!
In this new era, studying in China holds great promise and tChina Campus Network is determined to seize all the opportunities. We will continue to promote the high-quality development of studying in China, enrich the connotations and advance the construction of the “Study in China” brand, make greater contributions to the “Belt and Road” initiative, work towards making China the most influential and attractive destination for international students, and contribute to building China into a world-renowned education center with significant influence by providing creativity and solutions.