On the afternoon of September 24, 2020, the opening ceremony of the 2020 Executive Master of Public Health Program (EMPH) was held through video conference at the School of Public Health, Peking University. 15 international freshmen from different countries in Africa participated in the opening ceremony remotely. Leaders and teachers from the International Cooperation Office of Peking University Health Science Center, Department of Peking University Health Science Center, Peking University Graduate School, and Peking University School of Public Health attended the opening ceremony. Professor Xu Yajun from the School of Public Health served as the host of the opening ceremony.
Zuo Xiaoguang, deputy director of the International Cooperation Office of Peking University Health Science Center, delivered a speech at the opening ceremony. He firstly extended his warmest welcome to all fresh students. He mentioned, affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, students could not come to China. For this reason, the School of Public Health has established an online teaching platform and developed online courses to ensure high-quality education. This kind of selfless dedication and conscientious teaching attitude fully embodies the spirit of "kindness" of Peking University Health Science Center. He hoped that the COVID-19 pandemic would be controlled as soon as possible. He looked forward to meeting students on the campus of Peking University Health Science Center in the near future.
Xu Ming, Dean of the Department of Peking University Health Science Center, Peking University Graduate School, put forward three "hope" to all freshmen. Firstly, He hoped students could understand the education concept of Peking University –" being healthy with both ability and political integrity", making new friends and starting a new chapter of life. Secondly, He hoped students could learn extensively, think carefully, gain insight into the future, and become a bridge of cultural exchanges between China and foreign countries and a friendly messenger for future international relations. Finally, he hoped that students could understand the breadth and profundity of Chinese culture, and draw nutrition from China's rich cultural resources, as well bringing the rich and diverse African culture to China, and participating in the development of global public health with a broader vision and a more solid foundation.
Meng Qingyue, dean of the School of Public Health of Peking University, gave the freshmen a comprehensive introduction to the development history, organization structure, research orientation, scientific research progress, overseas academic exchanges and cooperation, and social services of the School of Public Health. He hoped that all students could work diligently to acquire knowledge, enhance personal abilities, improve individual quality, develop a wholesome personality, and contribute to the development of public health.
Professor Zheng Zhijie, director of the Department of Global Health, Peking University School of Public Health, delivered a speech as a teacher representative. He mentioned, although all students were freshmen in the EMPH, they had already had rich work experience in public health and leadership potential. Teachers and students should learn from each other and make progress together. The courses of the EMPH are designed aiming to enhance students’ public health capabilities, including scientific analysis and assessment of public health issues, policy development, program planning, leadership and communication skills, etc. He hoped all students could gain valuable knowledge and skills from this program. He also reminded students that they could attend online courses flexibly, but they must complete assignments on time.
Daniel Odur, a freshman representative of the EMPH, said that it was a great honor for him to join the EMPH at Peking University. All students cherished the learning opportunities at Peking University and would make full use of this international platform and rich resources. He believed after completing this international program, all students could acquire valuable knowledge and skills on disease prevention and control and health management, and they would devote themselves to the development of global public health.
Finally, Ms. Xu Baiyu from the International Cooperation Office of Peking University Health Science Center introduced scholarships, visas, and other life issues to all students and welcomed all students to actively communicate with teachers about the difficulties they encounter in study and life.
Source: PKU School of Public Health
Writer: Mingfang Yang, Chuyao Jin
Editor: Yajun Xu, Xiangrong Xu