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Taiwan’s Ministry of Education and USC establish a co-funded program for Taiwanese postdoctoral fellows to undertake research at USC

Date: 02/28/2017

Taiwan’s Ministry of Education and USC establish a co-funded program for Taiwanese postdoctoral fellows to undertake research at USC

The University of Southern California, USC, is among the leading higher education destinations for students from Taiwan studying abroad, with currently 443 students from Taiwan there. A delegation led by USC president, Dr. C.L Max Nikias, and including his wife, Niki, several members of the USC Board of Trustees, and deans of various USC colleges and schools visited Taiwan in February.
An important highlight of their visit was USC and Taiwan’s Ministry of Education signing a memorandum of understanding in Taipei on February 20, for the university to host and train top young Taiwanese academics as postdoctoral fellows at its Los Angeles campus. Nearly 100 representatives and guests of the ministry, local universities, and members of the media attended the signing ceremony.
A new jointly-funded program will give scholars from Taiwan who have recently been awarded their PhD the opportunity to be awarded a postdoctoral fellowship at USC for up to two years. They will undertake research in one or more of the so-called “5 +2 innovative industry areas”: namely sustainable energy, defense and other technology, engineering, biomedicine, and the biological sciences, which have been designated as priority research areas by Taiwan’s government.
“USC has a long history of academic partnerships across Asia and we are honored that the Taiwan Ministry of Education has invited us to participate in this joint fellowship,” USC President C.L. Max Nikias said. “With this agreement, we are demonstrating our commitment to support top research and top research talent in Taiwan, which has long been an important source of students and research partnerships for USC.”
“We’re excited to partner with the University of Southern California, one of the world’s top universities, to support Taiwan’s young fellows as they conduct research across a number of vital technical fields,” said Dr. Tsai Ching-hwa, political deputy minister of Taiwan’s Ministry of Education. “This is an invaluable opportunity for our scholars not only to pursue their research at a world-class university in a vibrant international city.”
This new memorandum of understanding will stay in effect for five years, and USC and the Taiwan Ministry of Education will jointly contribute $68,000 for each postdoctoral fellow each year to cover their salary, benefits, and administrative support.

USC already enjoys a longstanding relationship with Taiwan’s Ministry of Education. In addition to this new agreement, USC recently renewed a five-year scholarship program with the Ministry to host and fund exceptional Taiwanese students undertaking a PhD at the university in health, technical, scientific, and other fields. That renewal extends the PhD program for another five years.
During the USC delegation’s visit to Taiwan, Dr. Nikias also signed a memorandum for continued strategic cooperation with National Taiwan University and met with Taiwan’s vice president, Chen Chien-jen.

L-R: USC Trustee John Mork; C.J. Liu, education counselor with the Taiwan Ministry of Education; Dr. C.L. Max Nikias, USC president; and Taiwan Political Deputy Minister Dr. Tsai Ching-Hwa at the ceremony to sign a memorandum of understanding for a program that will bring top Taiwanese scientists to USC.