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China’s pioneering liberal arts college co-founds Pacific Alliance


China’s first modern liberal arts college, Beijing Normal University-Hong Kong Baptist University United International College (UIC), has initiated the Pacific Alliance of Liberal Arts Colleges (PALAC) with eight other liberal arts universities.

Addressing global education issues and climate change, PALAC networks like-minded institutions working for liberal arts exchange and scholarship to benefit students and the region.

Founding institutions also include Soka University of America, Pomona College, University of Puget Sound (US), Quest University (Canada), and Fulbright University (Vietnam).

PALAC stimulates joint programming initiatives and multilateral cooperation in innovative pedagogy through a series of working groups.

The groups are focusing on liberal arts development and worldwide issues, conducting collaborative research on climate change.

They also discuss faculty and administrator exchanges and shared intellectual property as well as digital resources.

This new Alliance held its first annual Global Liberal Arts Conference between 3-4 June 2022.

As one of the founding members, UIC is home to a diverse faculty from more than 30 countries and regions with English as the medium of instruction.

Situated in Zhuhai city of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, UIC articulates its whole-person oriented perspective on international liberal arts, tapping into traditional Chinese and Western cultural resources.

Among UIC’s Class of 2021 who have confirmed their placement, 82% chose overseas further studies; and among these postgraduates, 81% were admitted to the QS world’s top 100 universities.

Bae Geuna, a marketing student from Korea, took three-semester Chinese language courses and spent the recent two Chinese New Year holidays with local friends.

She revealed UIC helped her understand China with a global outlook. Some of her fellow students attended cultural courses such as Chinese archery and guqin.

The multicultural environment also benefited Xia Qing, a UIC graduate pursuing a DPhil at the University of Oxford with a full scholarship.

Ms Xia acknowledged the close teacher-student mentorship at the intellectually stimulating campus of UIC, a typical liberal arts advantage guiding her future career.

Joining PALAC conforms to UIC’s commitment to advancing the internationalisation of Chinese higher education, which has been one of its core values since its inception in 2005.

In addition, UIC has extensively established partnerships with elite universities, including the University of Edinburgh, the University of California, Berkeley Extension, the University of Seoul, and the University of Technology Sydney, which covers Europe, North America, Asia and Oceania.