President Lee Heads Delegation to Elite Baltic Universities
A delegation of NTU officials headed by NTU President Si-Chen Lee visited NTU’s partner universities and other elite universities in the Baltic republics of Latvia, Lithuania and Finland for ten days in February and March. At the invitation of Ambassador Gary K.Y. Ko of the Taipei Mission in the Republic of Latvia, NTU arranged a top level delegation, including Dean for International Affairs Hsiao-Wei Yuan, Associate Dean of the College of Science Hongey Chen and Director of the Center for Condensed Matter Sciences Li-Chyong Chen.
The delegation’s itinerary included visits to Vilnius University and the Kaunas University of Technology in Lithuania, the University of Latvia and Riga Technical University in Latvia and the University of Helsinki in Finland. The NTU officials also paid visits to the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences and the Latvian Academy of Sciences.
A special highlight of the trip was President Lee’s speech at the opening ceremony of the new Taiwan Center at Vytautas Magnus University in Lithuania, the first such center to be established in Eastern Europe. President Lee’s speech centered on the current state of higher education in Taiwan and the challenges it faces.
For many years, NTU has had successful student exchange programs and cooperated closely with the University of Latvia and University of Helsinki, the premier universities of their home countries, Latvia and Finland. In visiting these two universities, the delegation aimed to strengthen the academic exchanges as well as to hold talks regarding ongoing cooperative research projects and ideas for future areas of cooperation with NTU.
CCMS Director Chen has obtained a subsidy from Taiwan’s National Science Council for the promotion of scientific cooperation with Latvia and Lithuania, and is working closely with a team led by Prof. Baiba Berzina of the Institute of Solid State Physics at the University of Latvia. The two parties are considering setting up a future bilateral symposium for the purpose of suporting scientific research exchanges.
During the visit, the NTU delegation signed agreements on scholarly exchanges and collaboration with Vilnius University, the Kaunas University of Technology and Riga Technical University. It also established NTU’s first student exchange program with the Kaunas University of Technology.
Resulting in the inking of four agreements, the delegation’s trip to these three Baltic republics was highly fruitful, and the academic communities in the region considered the visit to be very important. The NTU officials not only opened up new opportunities for greater cooperation but enhanced Taiwan’s visibility and academic status in the Baltic region.