UD, Xiamen University establish dual degree in oceanography
Xiamen University President Zhu Chongshi, left, and UD President Patrick Harker shake hands after signing an agreement to establish a dual degree in oceanography.


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2:53 p.m., Jan. 4, 2011----The University of Delaware and Xiamen University (XMU) have signed an agreement to establish a dual degree program in oceanography. The program allows students from either university to earn a doctoral degree from both institutions.

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Signing the agreement during a recent meeting between officials of the two schools were UD President Patrick Harker, XMU President Zhu Chongshi, UD College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment Dean Nancy Targett, and XMU College of Oceanography and Environmental Science Dean Minhan Dai.

The degree program builds on an already strong relationship between the universities. In 2007, they signed an agreement to enhance research partnerships, and in 2008 they formed the Joint Institute for Coastal Research and Management.

In October 2010, UD celebrated the opening of its Confucius Institute, which was created as a result of the universities' strong collaborations.

UD and XMU students routinely take advantage of these strong ties by participating in exchange visits. The new program, which will be officially launched in spring 2011, will give participating students the opportunity to earn a dual degree if they study at least three semesters at the other institution.

“Both UD and Xiamen University have world-class oceanography research and graduate programs,” Targett said. “This new program only serves to strengthen those programs while giving our students global experiences and bolstering our well-established relationship with Xiamen University.”

In addition to providing students with an opportunity to earn a degree from both UD and Xiamen University, it allows them to confront environmental issues and to learn the language and culture of another country.

“This program will open a new and fruitful avenue for sustaining the strong partnership between Xiamen University and UD,” XMU's Minhan Dai said. “With such a program, we are also providing our young generations a platform to closely work together to tackle the common environmental problems that we are facing or will be facing.”

Article by Elizabeth Boyle

Photo by Kathy Atkinson