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St. John's University Adopts Memorandum of Understanding with East China Normal University

Monday, November 3, 2014

Conrado "Bobby" Gempesaw, Ph.D., president of St. John's University, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with delegates from East China Normal University (ECNU) on Oct. 28, signifying a mutual commitment to forge a collaborative partnership for educational exchange and research.

ECNU, located in Shanghai, China, and founded in 1951, is known for its research programs. It has formed partnerships with several academic institutions in the United States, including New York University.

Dr. Gempesaw, who visited ECNU as dean of the Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics at the University of Delaware, told the delegates that one of his priorities at St. John’s is to enhance global relationships with other institutions. "We look forward to some mutually beneficial partnerships with your university," he stressed.

“In addition to our commitment to building international partnerships, this agreement reflects St. John’s dedication to fostering student success,” explained Anthony Pacheco, vice president for global programs. “By providing expanded opportunities for students to gain international experience through programs abroad, we are preparing them for the global marketplace.”  

Before gathering for a luncheon with University deans, ECNU delegates met with a group of St. John's administrators. Each university provided an overview of its respective faculty, students, and programs. Simon Geir Møller, Ph.D., vice provost for graduate education and research, presented a brief history and summary of St. John's, emphasizing the University's international presence, with campuses in Paris and Rome, and its commitment to providing study abroad options through its varied Global Studies offerings.

"This provides students with a global dimension to their educational experience,” Møller said. “What we're trying to do is empower them not just to know what New York and the United States are about, but to add an international context."

"We're very pleased to be here on this beautiful campus," said Mei Bing, vice president of ECNU. She echoed Dr. Gempesaw's sentiment expressing hope that this would be the beginning of a fruitful relationship between St. John's and ECNU.