The American financier Stephen A. Schwarzman is creating a $300 million scholarship program that he hopes will be a Chinese counterpart to the Rhodes, The New York Timesreported. The scholarship would annually support 200 students enrolling in yearlong master’s programs at Tsinghua University, in Beijing.
It’s anticipated that 45 percent of the Schwarzman Scholars will come from the U.S., 20 percent from China, and 35 percent from other countries. The students will live in a new residential college facility, Schwarzman College, for which ground breaking is scheduled for later this year.
Schwarzman said he is personally committing $100 million and is raising the additional funds from private donors, including Bank of America, Boeing, BP, Caterpillar, Credit Suisse, and JPMorgan Chase, as well as New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s personal foundation. The Times notes that the endowment for the prestigious Rhodes Scholarship, which supports study at Oxford, is currently about $203 million.
Iranian officials have warned citizens there not to view a Farsi-language blog operated by Haifa University,The Times of Israelreported. The warning followed reports in Iran about the popularity of the blog, which says it has more than 100,000 visits a month. One warning sent to Iranians said: "Beware of this site; it’s meant to recruit spies for the oppressing Zionist regime."
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has rejected calls to fire the education and science minister, Dmitry Livanov, The Moscow Timesreported. Livanov has attracted controversy for seeking to reduce the number of universities through mergers or closures and decrease the number of state-funded student placements.
"I believe that a minister whom everybody likes is a person who most likely doesn't cope very well with his duties," Medvedev reportedly said.
Students at the London School of Economics have criticized their institution for its decision to expose the fact that BBC journalists accompanied them on a trip to North Korea, Times Higher Educationreported. The university has lambasted the British broadcaster for using a student organization’s trip as “cover” for the filming of a documentary, arguing that “the students were not given enough information to enable informed consent, yet were given enough to put them in serious danger if the subterfuge had been uncovered prior to their departure from North Korea.” However, six of the 10 students on the trip have now issued a statement arguing that the university has further endangered them by publicizing the situation.
“We feel that we have now been put in more risk than was originally the case, as a result of the LSE’s decision to go public with their story,” the students said, adding that they had not all been consulted by LSE officials regarding their own accounts of the trip.
The students said they were informed in London that a journalist would be accompanying them and of the risk of deportation or detention if that were discovered. LSE stands by its assertion that the students were not fully informed of the risks.
Kerry says Japanese students are deterred by fears of gun violence. Chinese and Saudi Arabian students are among victims of Boston bombings. Does growth in international student population come despite concerns on safety?
A Chinese graduate student at Boston University was the third victim of Monday's bombing at the finish line of the Boston Marathon, the university announced Tuesday. University officials said that the student, whom it did not identify pending approval from his family, was among a trio of B.U. students and friends who watched the end of the marathon from near the finish line. Another graduate student was injured and remains hospitalized, the university said. Boston-area colleges continued to report that some of their students were injured, including seven from Emerson College.
Secretary of State John Kerry told CNN on Monday that international students – in particular those from Japan -- are scared of coming to the United States because of fears of gun violence. "We had an interesting discussion about why fewer students are coming to, particularly from Japan, to study in the United States, and one of the responses I got from our officials from conversations with parents here is that they're actually scared. They think they're not safe in the United States and so they don't come," Kerry told the broadcaster.
The number of international students from Japan is on the decline, but, as CNN noted, there are also other demographic and economic explanations.
Many medical faculty members at McGill University are protesting plans to shift the medical school curriculum from a research orientation to a focus on family medicine, The Montreal Gazette reported. The government of Quebec is strongly encouraging the shift, and supporters of the plan said that it will produce physicians who are needed by various communities. But professors say that McGill has traditionally played a key role in producing the physicians who also conduct high-level research, and that this mission is being gutted.