The Hopkins-Nanjing Center for Chinese and American Studies will open on schedule in September at a temporary location in Hawaii. The announcement was made last week by the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies of Johns Hopkins and Nanjing University in Nanjing, China.
The two universities ended the center's spring 2003 semester in Nanjing on April 22 as a precaution against severe acute respiratory syndrome. The decision to hold fall semester classes in the United States recognizes that it is impossible to know now what the SARS situation in China will be this fall, the two universities said.
Fall semester classes will be taught beginning Sept. 5 at the East-West Center in Honolulu, rather than in Nanjing, where since 1986 the two universities have administered the center's program in a facility designed for their use. The center's Chinese students and faculty will join their American and third-country colleagues and roommates in Hawaii for four months before returning to Nanjing for the spring 2004 semester, which opens in early March, after the Chinese New Year.
Both Johns Hopkins and Nanjing University are determined that the center's programs not be interrupted by the SARS epidemic.
Both universities said they recognized that considerable advance planning would be necessary to hold the program somewhere other than at its usual home in Nanjing, so they decided to make the decision now and move forward.
"The Hopkins-Nanjing Center will be open for business come fall," said Jessica Einhorn, dean of SAIS. "The decision we have made with Nanjing University is indicative of the strength of our partnership and the depth of our commitment to the future leaders of the U.S.-China relationship. The history and mission of the East-West Center [in Honolulu] make it an ideal partner for the Hopkins-Nanjing Center."
Jiang Shusheng, president of Nanjing University, said, "Splitting the academic year between our two countries will offer great advantage to a Chinese and American studies program that has always aimed at improving understanding between the United States and China."
Johns Hopkins and Nanjing universities expect the center to resume operations in Nanjing in spring 2004. Nanjing remains the home of all center programs. The two universities have committed a combined $18 million to an infrastructure expansion project that will double the size of the center's campus and student body.
"The Hopkins-Nanjing Center consists of the people who live and work there and the scholarship they pursue. It is not simply a set of buildings in Nanjing," said William R. Brody, president of Johns Hopkins. "By moving the center to the United States for one semester, we demonstrate that SARS will not disrupt the marquee program in U.S-China educational relations. We are grateful to the Asia Foundation and Mr. Daniel Koo, chairman of Shui Hing (HK) Limited, for assisting us during this extraordinary time. With their generous support, we are able to provide this opportunity at no additional tuition costs to our students."
The Hopkins-Nanjing Center gives approximately 100 students from the United States, China and other countries the opportunity to live together and pursue graduate-level studies for one year. SAIS administers the center's activities on behalf of Johns Hopkins.
The East-West Center, established by Congress in 1960, conducts education and research to strengthen relations between the United States and the countries of the Asia Pacific region. Professionals and students from the United States, Asia and the Pacific study and work together at the center's 21-acre campus in Honolulu.
SAIS also announced that its summer Chinese language program, Nanjing Immersion, will be relocated from Nanjing to the SAIS campus in Washington, D.C. Nanjing Immersion is administered jointly with CET Academic Programs, which is also based in Washington.