President Geoffroy, faculty visit universities in China


Photo courtesy of Gregory Geoffroy

Geoffroy — Trip to China

Kaitlin Miner

A recent trip to China taken by President Geoffroy and eight Iowa State faculty members aimed to strengthen relations with several universities and the China Academy of Agricultural Sciences.

The visit which lasted from May 22 to May 30, included stops at five universities, as well as the China Academy of Agricultural Sciences. The group toured the facilities at these universities and spoke with faculty heads and members, particularly in their colleges of agriculture, engineering, design and veterinary medicine.

“There were several purposes of the visit, including the strengthening of existing relationships and the creation of new relationships with some of the most important universities in China that house programs in [those five aforementioned areas],” Geoffroy said via email.

Geoffroy explained that he hopes to increase the numbers of ISU students studying in China, as well as to create more opportunities for Chinese students to study at Iowa State. 

“We had goals of creating more opportunities for ISU students to study in China for short or long periods, creating more opportunities for Chinese students to come to ISU for graduate or undergraduate study, and establishing opportunities for faculty exchanges and joint research programs between ISU professors and their counterparts in China,” Geoffroy said. “There were also important opportunities for us to connect to some of our alumni who now live in China.”

While visiting the different universities, representatives of Iowa State and the Beijing Technical University signed a Memorandum of Understanding. This memorandum contained an agreement to strengthen the relations between the two universities, something that Iowa State has agreed to with other universities throughout the world.

Iowa State has had a long-standing relationship with China, although this is Geoffroy’s first visit to the universities. Geoffroy is eager to continue Iowa State’s relationship with China’s universities.

“[This relationship] will create more opportunities for students to either study or visit China and interact with students and faculty,” Geoffroy said. “It will enhance the global education that Iowa State students receive, because there’s no question that China is increasing rapidly [in technology and development], and having a global perspective is important.”