A Summary of the Fourth Belt and Road Forum on Education Cooperation with ASEAN Countries
Hosted by Haikou University of Economics (HUE) and organized by ASEAN Studies Institute, with the support by Foreign Affairs Office, Education Department of Hainan Province and Provincial Federation of Social Sciences, the 4th Belt and Road Forum on Education Cooperation with ASEAN Countries was successfully held in Haikou University of Economics on 23rd April, 2021. More than 80 representatives of higher education institutions and related organizations from nine countries gathered in the campus of HUE to discuss commonly concerned issues and further collaboration.
The opening ceremony of the forum was held in the morning of 23rd April, and presided over by Mr. Liu Shichang, vice president of HUE. At the opening ceremony, Prof. Chen Xiao, President of HUE, delivered a welcome speech to express his gratitude for the participation of the representatives. The congratulatory letter from Ms. Aileen Tan, Chairman of Singapore China Society, was displayed on the large LED screen of the new multi-media conference hall. Prof. Chan Tuck Hoong, President of HELP University Malaysia, Prof. Lee Joon-Woo, Vice President of Chungnam National University Korea also delivered video speeches in which they expressed their congratulations on the opening of the forum and hoped the forum will continue to push international education exchanges and cooperation to a new height.
The theme of the forum is International Education Cooperation and Development under the Background of the Construction of Hainan International Education Innovation Island. Fifteen experts and scholars from home and abroad, including Prof. Meng Lizhen, President of Guangxi University of Foreign Languages, Dr. Dinn Wahyudin from Universitas Pendidikan Indonesia and Dr. Anawut Choosup, President of Rajapruk University Thailand, delivered keynote presentations successively. The presentations cover a wide range of topics including educational exchanges and cooperation among universities from ASEAN countries, Japan, South Korea and China; the construction of Hainan International Education Innovation Island; cross-cultural exchanges and education cooperation among universities along the Belt and Road route; and the cultivation of higher education talents. A summary made by the Secretary General Prof. Chen Jiang states that the participants have made in-depth discussions in five aspects: international exchanges and cooperation among universities, education amid COVID-19 pandemic, teaching methods, personnel training and suggestions for further development of the forum.
1. Communication and Cooperation among Universities
In his speech at the opening ceremony, President of HUE, Prof. Chen Xiao points out that in recent years, HUE has been actively building a platform for further international cooperation, constantly strengthening exchanges with universities from ASEAN countries, Japan and Korea, and pushing international education and cooperation to a new height; Prof. Chan Tuck Hoong, President of HELP University, believes that there are no cultural barriers for Chinese students to study in Malaysia, and he encourages more Chinese and Malaysian students to study in each other's countries to strengthen mutual exchanges; Mr. Zhang Bin, President of North America International Education Group, stresses that the key issue of education cooperation with other countries is to introduce, digest and absorb what is taken in. He also points out that at present, China's Ministry of Education is encouraging education cooperation to be carried out with the “4+0” model; Dr. Yi Ying, Chinese Department Research Coordinator of Universitas Bina Nusantara emphasizes the importance of tourism vocational education to the development of tourism, looking forward to promoting further cooperation between Indonesia and China in tourism.
2. Education amid COVID-19 Pandemic
Prof. Lee Joon-Woo, Vice President of Chungnam National University believes that the education community should try its best to eliminate the impact of the pandemic on educational fairness and to better carry out online teaching amid the pandemic; Dr. Anawut Choosup, President of Rajapruk University of Thailand argues that online teaching will become an important part of the educational sector in the future; Japanese education community has begun to build a system of teaching in response to the pandemic: Mr. Toshiaki Matsumoto, member of Osaka Prefectural Assembly, mentions that Osaka prefectural government is now developing an online education system supported by large capacity internet system; Mr. Yoshifumi Uemori from Otemon Gakuyin University of Japan introduces the “BYOD” online learning equipment developed for students to carry on learning activities during the COVID-19 pandemic.
3. Discussion on Teaching Methods
Prof. Meng Lizhen, President of Guangxi University of Foreign Languages introduces the University’s teaching experience. Students who study foreign languages are requested to study other professional programmes and vice versa. Students are encouraged to actively start their own businesses at home and abroad; Dr. Dinn Wahyudin from University Pendidikan Indonesian believes that in the development of a multicultural society like Indonesia, cross-culture education is very important; Director Ying from Indonesia also mentions Indonesia’s publishing of electronic textbooks in this area; Dr. Laddawan Petroj from Rajapruk University of Thailand finds in her research that middle-aged or older university teachers have a higher level of academic research. While female teachers, she also states, are more capable at teaching and research; Mr. Wu Lixin, President of the World League of Fighting, introduces the true meaning of Chinese martial arts to the audience and the idea of Chinese martial arts entering the Olympics Games.
4. About Personnel Training
Mr. Zhang Bin, President of North America International Education Group also involves in the cultivation of talents with an international vision. He believes that international talents not only need language and professional skills, but also political awareness as well as family and national sentiments; Mr. Qin Lijian, Dean of China Cooperation Community Research Institute, Anhui University of Finance and Economics, while talking about the relationship between education and health, raises a question: should rural low-income families use their limited funds for health or education? Mr. Ma Chao, Director of International Cooperation, New Higher Education Group, talks about efforts to promote the process of international education with the power of collectivization. At the same time, he shares the group’s experience in this area with everyone; Mr. Li Bing, Chairman of New Silk Road Group, introduces their experience of school-enterprise collaboration; Mr. Sopheak Taing, Principal of Abundant Life International School of Cambodia, describes their student training in a documentary film which shows that every student in the college must learn three languages: Cambodia, English and Chinese.
5. Suggestions for Further Development of the Forum
Ms. Aileen Tan, President of the China Society of Singapore says that the forum is gaining in reputation in the ASEAN region and she expresses her earnest well-wish for the long-term development of the forum; Mr. Sun Qingfu, Deputy Party Secretary, School of Labour Economics, Capital University of Economics and Business, specifically suggests that under the current new situation of the construction of Hainan Free Trade Port, the forum should further design response strategies to attract more attention and play a greater role at home and abroad.
Since 2018, Haikou University of Economics has consecutively held the Belt and Road Forumon Education Cooperation with ASEAN Countries in April every year to strengthen the education exchanges between China and ASEAN countries, as well as Japan and Korea, for the universities in Hainan Province and even China. The forum has helped built a platform for academic research, student exchange and cultural exchanges, as well as providing a good opportunity for personnel training with international perspectives.
Organizing Committee of the Forum on Education Cooperation
with ASEAN Countries
Haikou University of Economics
ASEAN Studies Institute
April 27th, 2021
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