Fudan University

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Group.png Fudan University  
Fudan University.png
(Scientia et studium, quaestīo et cogītātīo)
HeadquartersShanghai, China
One of the most prestigious and selective universities in China

Fudan University (复旦大学|t=復旦大學 Fùdàn Dàxué) is a major public research university in Shanghai, China. It is widely considered one of the most prestigious and selective universities in China.[1] Founded in 1905, shortly before the end of China's imperial Qing dynasty, Fudan was the first university established independently by the Chinese people.[2][3] Fudan is a member of the elite C9 League and a Chinese Ministry of Education Class A Double First Class University.[4]

Fudan is renowned for its liberal atmosphere and rigorous academics. It is an important academic center for Chinese humanities, natural sciences, and medical studies. Fudan enjoys the reputation of The No.1 Academy of Jiangnan ("江南第一学府").[5] For the past hundred years, Fudan has made significant contributions to the development of the country, the rejuvenation of the nation, the well-being of the society, and the advance of the national education, science, medicine, and technology.[6] Fudan has cultivated a number of outstanding talents and many prominent figures for modern China. Notable Fudan alumni include Chen Yinke, Chen Wangdao, Chu Coching, Yan Fu, Yu Youren and "China's Kissinger" Wang Huning.

Fudan is a collegiate university with five colleges – Zhide (志德), Tengfei (腾飞), Keqing (克卿), Renzhong (任重), and Xide (希德). It is now composed of four campuses in Shanghai – Handan (邯郸), Fenglin (枫林), Zhangjiang (张江), and Jiangwan (江湾) – which share the same central administration. Fudan has 17 hospitals affiliated. In the 2020 QS Asian University Rankings, Fudan University is ranked 4th in China and 7th in Asia.[7]


Fudan University, formerly romanized as Fuh Tan, was founded as Fudan Public School in 1905, by Ma Xiangbo, SJ, who had resigned from Aurora University. The two Chinese characters Fu (, means "again") and Dan (, means "morning", "light" ), meaning both "(heavenly light shines) day after day" and "Aurora Revived", were chosen by Ma on the recommendation of Yu Youren, from the Confucian Classic Shangshu Dazhuan (Chinese: 尚书大传): "Itinerant as the twilight, sun glows and moon luminesces" (Chinese: 日月光华,旦复旦兮). The university motto "Scientia et studium, quaestīo et cogitatio" comes from Analects Book 19.6 (Chinese: 博学而笃志,切问而近思), which means "rich in knowledge and tenacious of purposes, inquiring with earnestness and reflecting with self-practice".

In 1911, during the Xinhai Revolution, the college was occupied as headquarters of the Guangfu Army and closed down for almost one year.

In 1917, Fudan Public School became a private university named the Private Fudan University, and also had a middle school and university-preparatory school. In 1929, Fudan reorganized its departments, expanding to include departments of journalism, law, and education. After the Japanese invasion of China in 1937, Fudan moved with the Kuomintang government to the inland city of Chongqing, the wartime Chinese capital. On 25 December 1941, the First Meeting of Fifth Conference of the Highest Executive Authority of the National Government of the Republic of China voted to change Fudan University (Chongqing) to a public university with Wu Nanxuan as its president. Fudan University then became National Fudan University. After the end of World War II, it moved back to Shanghai.

After the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949, Fudan lost its "National" appellation and became Fudan University to reflect the fact that all universities under the new socialist state would be public. Fudan was the first university to be reorganized by the new government in 1952 and modeled on Soviet education. The original departments were changed, with arts and sciences departments from at least ten other universities in eastern China being added. Parts of Aurora University merged into Fudan in 1952.

In the late 1970s, after the Cultural Revolution, the university was converted to a modern, comprehensive[clarification needed] university.

Fudan University and Shanghai Medical University merged on 27 April 2000.

In December 2019, Fudan University changed its charter, removing the phrase "academic independence and freedom of thought" (學術獨立和思想自由) and including a "pledge to follow the Communist party's leadership" (學校堅持中國共產黨的領導), leading to protests among the students.[8][9] It also said that Fudan University had to “equip its teachers and employees” with “Xi Jinping Thought”, leading to concerns about the diminishing academic freedom of Fudan.[10][11]

Popularity and selectivity

Fudan University's undergraduate program is extremely selective. Fudan is one of the five universities (together with Tsinghua University, Peking University, Zhejiang University and Shanghai Jiao Tong University) in China whose undergraduate programs are the hardest for students to get in: less than 0.2% of National College Entrance Examination ("Gaokao") takers can make it (As a comparison, the five most selective Ivy League schools in 2012 let in three times the percentage (0.6%) of SAT-takers.).[12] Fudan has been placed consistently among the three most selective universities (with Tsinghua University and Peking University) in China for the last twenty years.

Notable alumni

Since 1952, Fudan University has a total of 95 academicians alumni, second only to Peking University and Tsinghua University in China.[13] After the Cultural Revolution, Fudan has also educated more than 60 alumni being full professors in TOP15 American/British universities, which makes Fudan the second highest Chinese university in this criteria.[14]

Today, associations organized by Fudan's alumni can be found in the United States, Japan, Australia, Canada, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and mainland China. Educationally, academically and economically, Fudan alumni's strengthened ties with their alma mater are playing a significant role in the development of the University. The routine services of these alumni associations include: updating contact lists, holding conferences, conducting Sino-foreign cultural exchanges, and keeping contact with other alumni associations throughout the world.

Li Deng-hui, ex-president of Fudan instructed the students to unite, serve and sacrifice. A well-known 77-year-old architect from the Alumni Association in Taipei also said that strength lies in unity and that Fudan alumni are expected to serve as an example in the increasing mergers of higher learning schools in mainland China.

A worldwide gathering is held annually in order to promote the relations between the alumni all over the world.

Notable Fudan alumni are listed below.

Government and Politics


Social Sciences

Natural sciences and mathematics






An Alumnus on Wikispooks

Shen Dingli1961ChinaAcademicProfessor of international relations at Fudan University. Post-docorate from Princeton University


  1. https://www.timeshighereducation.com/student/best-universities/best-universities-china%7Ctitle=Best universities in China 2018
  2. http://www.fudan.edu.cn/en/channels/view/34/]
  3. http://edu.people.com.cn/GB/8216/47717/47721/3724061.html
  4. http://www.moe.gov.cn/srcsite/A22/moe_843/201709/t20170921_314942.html (Notice from the Ministry of Education and other national governmental departments announcing the list of double first-class universities and disciplines)
  5. http://www.shtong.gov.cn/node2/n189665/n189674/n112486/n112518/index.html
  6. http://www.gov.cn/ldhd/2005-09/25/content_69834.htm
  7. https://www.topuniversities.com/university-rankings/asian-university-rankings/2020
  8. https://www.asiatimes.com/2019/12/article/students-protest-at-shanghais-fudan-university/ A video circulating this week showed students at Shanghai’s Fudan University singing the school song – which extols "academic independence and freedom of thought" – in an apparent protest.{...}Besides removing "freedom of thought", the ministry adds to the charter "arming the minds of teachers and students with Xi Jinping’s new era of socialist ideology with Chinese characteristics". It also obliges faculty and students to adhere to "core socialist values" and build a "harmonious" campus environment – a code phrase for the elimination of anti-government sentiment.}}
  9. https://www.cna.com.tw/news/firstnews/201912180210.aspx
  10. https://www.universityworldnews.com/post.php?story=20200110071137628
  11. https://www.npr.org/2020/01/20/796377204/chinese-universities-are-enshrining-communist-party-control-in-their-charters%7Caccess-date=2020-06-30
  12. https://collegestats.org/2012/08/15-facts-about-chinas-grueling-college-entrance-exam/
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  16. https://www.forbes.com/profile/lu-zhiqiang/ |website=Forbes
  17. https://web.archive.org/web/20170703065831/https://www.crypto-financing.com/speakers/jane-zhang-ceo-of-shellcoin-and-skyledger/
  18. https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/beimengfu/german-thomas-chinese-husband%7Ctitle=This German Man Is China's Newest Internet Celebrity, Believe It Or Not
  19. https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/sport/manly-seabirds-cheerleader-amy-lyons-competing-in-chinese-speaking-competition/news-story/067a72de9d4ab304677dac63f3c274d1