Yantai to kick off with Math and Natural Sciences

Classes from at least three programmes from the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences are likely to be among the first taught at the international branch campus in Yantai.

According to several members of the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, three programmes – Life Science & Technology, Industrial Engineering & Management and Chemistry – appear to be among the first courses the RUG plans to teach in China.

List of ‘firsts’

Dirk Slotboom, director of the Chemistry department, reported via email, ‘As far as I know, Chemistry is still on the list of ‘firsts’.’ Recently, Slotboom submitted a letter to the faculty and university boards, requesting more information with regard to the branch campus plans. Slotboom said last week that the letter is currently being addressed.

Although sources say that Life Science & Technology is on the list to be exported to the Chinese campus, adjunct programme director Louis van de Zande will not yet confirm that. ‘There is nothing to report right now, but I assume that there will be soon.’

Additional challenge

If Life Science and Technology goes to Yantai, that will present an additional challenge: while most mathematics and natural sciences bachelor courses are already taught in English, Life Science & Technology is currently only taught in Dutch. The classes taught in Yantai must be in English, so the programme will have to provide a translated track for its curriculum there.

Sources within the faculty also suggest that Industrial Engineering and Management is part of the Yantai plans. The faculty board of Mathematics and Natural Sciences will officially decide which programmes are going, when they will go and in which order by 16 June.

‘Too early to confirm’

RUG spokesperson Gernant Deekens would not corroborate which FMNS departments were intended for Yantai. ‘It is still too early to confirm the names of the programmes. That has yet to be made known, and we are in discussions with the faculties.’ The RUG classes are scheduled to begin in China in 2017.

The Faculty of Economics and Business has announced two programmes that will likely be going to Yantai: Economics & Business Economics and International Economics & Business.