Celebrating over 35 years since the enactment of the Taiwan Relations Act, the People’s Republic of China (Taiwan) and the United States share a special bond. As Taiwan’s third largest trading partner, the U.S. continues to look towards the nation for its expertise in information and biotechnology.
Taiwan, Asia’s 5th largest economy, now faces new challenges in the form of further transformation to a high-technology and service-oriented economy. Dubbed the “Silicon Valley of Asia”, Taiwan more than ever is keen on deepening its relationship with the U.S. and with both countries ushering in a change of government, the relationship between the two is expected to continue to flourish.
Due for publishing in the July/August 2017 issue of Foreign Affairs, the Special Business Report on Taiwan will highlight success stories, profile top executives and identify business development opportunities in the country’s most dynamic industries.
Intensifying their efforts to attract more foreign students and forge more international partnerships, Taiwan is promoting the advantages of studying in its universities, which are growing increasingly known for the diversity of programs, quality of corporate collaborations, and pioneering research.
One of the most prestigious universities, National Taipei University (NTPU) excels in social sciences, public affairs and business. To attract excellent students and faculty, NTPU has implemented a three-pronged approach: research projects that involve interdisciplinary instruction among different local and foreign schools, a multi-purpose center for all types of student activities, and a new building to house its newest school for computer science and electrical engineering.
NTPU has links with 160 foreign universities in 29 countries and wants to increase that number next year. Through these partnerships, NTPU is able to provide student and faculty exchange programs, as well as joint research and internships. NTPU also fosters social responsibility through community service efforts and nurtures student creativity through entrepreneurship activities.
“We have excellent teaching programs, strong research capabilities and a very beautiful campus. This healthy ecosystem and our efforts at collaboration will hopefully gain us a larger footprint in various fields of discipline locally and abroad,” NTPU President Dr. Dalton Lin said.
Another well-known institution, National Cheng Kung University (NCKU) effectively assumes its role as a global citizen through innovation and research in technology, medical engineering and social sciences.
Because of close collaboration between its students and the business community, NCKU boasts the highest percentage of intellectual property being commercialized. These initiatives have garnered the attention of companies around the world.
And to attract more foreign students, NCKU conducts more English classes.
“We aim to be a mini hub that answers important global issues. Our strength is building connected experiences and encouraging innovative and entrepreneurial mindsets with real field challenges. That is the value of NCKU,” President Dr. Jenny Su said.
Meanwhile, I-Shou University, backed by the billion-dollar conglomerate E-United Group, capitalizes on its network with domestic and international players in a host of industries. The school, founded 26 years ago, has partnerships with more than 500 companies and employs a faculty made mostly of non-Taiwanese.
It has agreements with 450 international universities and most interestingly, has an aboriginal college comprised of 600 students from Taiwan’s 18 indigenous tribes.
While internationalization and industry collaboration may be I-Shou’s strengths, it also strongly promotes the cultural diversity of Taiwan on campus. The decision to locate the campus on the outskirts of Kaohsiung spurred tourism in the area, created jobs for the local community and improved transport infrastructure.
“We encourage all faculties to be more active in international business. There are a lot of potential opportunities for industry collaboration. We want students to get the full experience while enjoying university life and ensure that they succeed,” I-Shou President Dr. Jei-Fu Shaw said.
A newcomer in the field, CTBC Financial Management College opened less than three years ago. Its mission was to promote public service and help the less fortunate get a reliable education.
Backed by CTBC Bank, the school has a high application rate because of scholarships on offer and the possibility of employment at the banking giant after graduation, summer internships abroad, housing allowances and the weekly forums attended by industry leaders and government ministers.
As a new school, CTBC Financial Management College wants first to establish high academic standards while also educating a fresh breed of world-class financial experts. To achieve that, the university has hired bank presidents, CFOs and other senior officers as professors.
“We want to train local and foreign students to be excellent financiers and future leaders. We aim to be an internationally known financial school while keeping the character of our college – small and beautiful. We look forward to our first batch of graduates,” said CTBC Financial Management College Chairman Chi-Tai Feng, who also once served as ambassador of Taiwan.