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Wanxiang Fellows Reception & Research Presentations

Although we’re already two and a half weeks into Fall Quarter, last Friday, October 12, marked the official end of the Summer Wanxiang Fellows Program.  The inaugural program’s nine student participants presented highlights from their experience in China and their team research projects to an audience of Northwestern faculty, staff, and students, and visitors from Wanxiang Group at Norris.

The event, which began with an informal, open reception and concluded with the students’ formal research presentations, highlighted the cooperation between Wanxiang Group and Northwestern University in their mutual goals of promoting research on green energy technology and sustainability issues, cultural exchange between the U.S. and China, and study abroad opportunities for students of diverse academic backgrounds.  Dévora Grynspan, Director of the Office of International Program Development, began the reception by thanking all the partners who made the Wanxiang program possible: the Office of the President, Wanxiang Corporation, Initiative for Sustainability and Energy at Northwestern, and IPD.

President Morton Schapiro, who attended the event and has been involved in the program’s development since Wanxiang approached him last year, emphasized his strong commitment to promoting energy and sustainability studies, as well as Chinese and East Asian studies at Northwestern.  “The marriage of environmental studies with Northwestern with China is just a dream come true. China has always been in my blood and soul,” said President Schapiro. Pin Ni, President of Wanxiang America Corporation, spoke to his company’s enthusiasm for the program and his optimism for its future improvements.  Finally, ISEN Director David Dunand addressed the crowd and gave his impressions about the program’s success.

Professor Mark Petri of Argonne National Laboratory, who led the students during their classes in May and during the two-week portion of the program in Hangzhou, introduced the students and moderated the question-and-answer portions of their research presentations.  Also in attendance was Professor Li-Cheng Gu, who leads the IPD NU in Beijing programs and accompanied the students throughout much of their experience in China.

After giving their final research presentations, ranging in subject matter from energy storage technologies to photovoltaic cell development to hydroelectricity production, the nine students of the 2012 inaugural Wanxiang Fellows Program were glad to have successfully wrapped up their class on Energy & Sustainability in China!

For more on the Wanxiang Research Presentations, see the article featured in the Northwestern Daily:

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