Aquaculture for all

Educational Exchange Benefits International Development

ALABAMA - An educational matching initiative has chosen Auburn University in Alabama to work with a Chinese university.

The universities fisheries department and allied aquaculture has entered into a five-year agreement with Ocean University, home of China’s most prestigious fisheries program.

This Chinese government initiative aims to match its best university programs with the best offered by educational institutions throughout the world.

“It really does make us feel good to be selected from another university like this,” said Auburn Department Head Dr David Rouse.

The Chinese government is investing heavily in ways to improve its educational system. By matching 100 Chinese universities that are tops in select disciplines with the best universities in the world in those disciplines, the Chinese believe they can improve the country’s economic and cultural development.

Better option

But Rouse is certain Auburn, and even Alabama, will benefit from the arrangement as well. He said the fisheries department has been working in international development of other fisheries programs for years, but this is much better.

“I think it’s going to be a great opportunity for the Chinese students to study here and for us to exchange with them. I expect even more ‘cream of the crop’ (students) from China. And we get good students in our program at their expense,” he added.

Each Chinese university with the prestigious designation receives funding from the country’s government to send graduate students and faculty members to an exchange university. Ocean University will send 10 scholars each year for five years for fisheries study at Auburn.

“For a country as big as China is and for the problems they have with fisheries and water and air quality, it’s really an honor to help them,” Rouse said.

Ocean University received national recognition for its work involving fish, shrimp, shellfish and similar species. Auburn’s known for its research in catfish and freshwater species. Other universities across China have or will be chosen for fields of study ranging from business and engineering to the liberal arts.

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