Eastern Michigan University aims to expand international footprint by entering a 15-year engineering partnership with Beibu Gulf University in China

Beibu Gulf University in China

YPSILANTI – The Eastern Michigan University College of Engineering and Technology plans to collaborate with Beibu Gulf University to establish a joint cooperation agreement. The Beibu Gulf campus is located in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region of China.

The EMU Board of Regents voted at its regular meeting on Friday, Oct. 25 to authorize President James Smith to negotiate and execute final documents for the partnership.

Under the plan, which needs to be approved by the Chinese Ministry of Education, students would have the opportunity to pursue several different courses of study, primarily in China and taught by faculty at that university as well as by Eastern Michigan faculty. The programs to be offered are:

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Vehicle Engineering
  • Mechanical Design and Manufacturing and Automation
  • Construction Project Costs
  • Internet of Things Engineering

The programs will seek to cultivate innovative, application-oriented talents in their students. 

Eastern professors would teach classes on a limited basis at the institution in each of a student’s four years of study, but would concentrate their teaching in a student’s fourth year, as students at the cooperative institution become more advanced.

The proposed agreement preserves academic freedom for all EMU faculty and staff and exempt EMU faculty and staff from any participation in Communist Party activities. Additionally, all intellectual property rights belonging to EMU’s faculty would be explicitly preserved.

The 15-year cooperative partnership would include four years of a ramp-up period in which the university is filled with its first four cohorts of students. 

It is expected that up to 300 students would be enrolled during each of the first four years (up to 60 students per program), so that the overall enrollment would eventually represent a total of up to 1,200 students (240 students per program) in this partnership. Upon successful completion of one of the courses of study above, a student would receive degrees from both Beibu Gulf University and Eastern Michigan University.

“We’re excited to begin this partnership,” said Mohamad Qatu, dean of the College of Engineering and Technology. “Agreements such as this one broaden mutual international understanding and cooperation with a key partner overseas, and offer excellent career preparation for students.”

Tuition revenues for Eastern Michigan

During each student’s first three years of study at the new institution, Beibu Gulf University would pay Eastern for six credits, based on the then-current EMU per-credit tuition rate.

For example, for the 2019-2020 academic year, Beibu Gulf University would pay EMU $2,625 per student, per academic year, that is, six EMU-taught credits at this year’s per credit tuition rate of $437.50.

In a student’s fourth academic year, Beibu Gulf University would pay EMU for 24 credits based on the EMU per-credit tuition rate. For example, for the 2019-20 academic year the amount would be $10,500 per student, or 24 credits at $437.50.

Moreover, Beibu Gulf University will pay EMU for a minimum of 18 students per cohort, for each approved and active program during each academic year, regardless of the actual number of students enrolled each academic year.

About Eastern Michigan University

Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest public university in Michigan. It currently serves nearly 18,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University's Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering and Technology; Health and Human Services; and, its graduate school. EMU is regularly recognized by national publications for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University's website.

October 25, 2019

Written by:
Geoff Larcom

Media Contact:
Geoff Larcom