Sichuan University is one of the national key comprehensive universities, located in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, China, with a long history and many predecessors, of which the earliest one was founded in 1740 with the origin in BCE 141. It was transformed to be a modern university in 1920s and the name National Sichuan University was adopted in 1931. Set in a city with ancient history, a relaxed lifestyle and cheap cost of living, Chengdu is a city for food-lovers and those that visit do not soon forget it. Sichuan University is one of China’s top schools, with one of China’s best medical programs. Medicine, engineering, natural sciences, liberal arts and management are all outstanding choices at this school. Sichuan University (SCU) is one of the national universities directly under the Ministry of Education (MOE). It is also one of the State 211 Project and 985 Project universities enjoying privileged construction in the Ninth Five-Year Plan period.
Today, Sichuan University is the most comprehensive and largest university in Western China, and is part of Project 211. SCU grants doctorates in twelve main disciplines and 111 subordinate disciplines. It also has six professional degree programs, and has 16 disciplines for postdoctoral research. The 109 bachelor’s degree programs SCU grants cover the main fields in liberal arts, sciences, engineering, medicine and agriculture. Its current student population is more than 70,000 and its alumni number over 200,000. The current Sichuan University is the result of mergers of former Sichuan University and the two other universities, Chengdu University of Science and Technology (CUST), a national university under the Ministry of Education, merged in 1994, shortly known by the name of Sichuan Union University for the new formed university, and China University of Medical Science (WCUMS), a university under the State Ministry of Health, in 2000.
Sichuan University has two national key labs, six national engineering centers, five ministerial (MOE) key labs, 35 provincial key labs, 10 ministerial and provincial centers, four key research bases for humanities and social sciences, and four clinical research bases at the national level. The university has invested significantly in research, teaching and medical equipment. Sichuan University is one of the earliest institutions of higher education in China, with many predecessors, and became National Sichuan University in 1931 during the period of Republic of China. The earliest predecessor of Sichuan University is Jinjiang Shuyuan established in 1740 at Chengdu Fuxue which was originated in BCE 141 and was the first local public higher learning institution. It shared the same root with today’s Chengdu Shishi High School. In 1902, Jinjiang Shuyuan, and Zunjing Shuyuan which was established in 1875, the two Chinese classical learning schools, were merged with Sichuan Zhong-Xi Xuetang (Sichuan Chinese and Western Learning School) which was established in 1896 and was a new modern type school with studies from modern western learnings, and formed Sichuan Higher School. In 1916, with the merger of Sichuan Higher School and Sichuan Higher Normal School which was established in 1905, National Chengdu Higher Normal School was founded, and it was later divided to form National Chengdu University in 1926 and National Chengdu Normal University in 1927. In 1931, by the merger of National Chengdu University, Chengdu Normal University, and the Public Sichuan University which was formed in 1927 by merger of five Sichuan provincial specialized schools, National Sichuan University was established. By 1949, Sichuan University had developed into one of the biggest national multidisciplinary universities with 6 schools, respectively in: literature, science, engineering, agriculture, law, and teacher training.
In 1949, upon the nationwide adjustment of universities and colleges, spurred by the Chinese revolution, Sichuan University became a university with majors on literature, historiography, religion, mathematics, physics, biology, and other subjects. In 1958, it was the only university outside Beijing directly administered by the Central Government The former Chengdu University of Science and Technology was established as the Chengdu Engineering College in 1954 as the result of the nation-wide college and department adjustment. It specialized in chemical engineering, hydroelectricity, mechanics, textiles, and light industry.
Sichuan University School of Medicine was originally built as a private medical school, once known as Huaxi Xiehe College (West China Union College) and then West China University of Medical Science. It was established in 1910 by five Christian missionary groups from the U.S., UK and Canada, with offered courses in stomatology, biomedicine, basic medicine and clinical medicine. It has been a medical university in China that has enjoyed a good reputation abroad. Zhang Lan, social activist, educationist, and former Vice-Chairman of the Chinese Central Government, and Wu Yuzhang, revolutionary and educationist, were once the President of the university. Other notable people who studied at SCU include Marshal Zhu De, one of the founding fathers of the People’s Republic of China and the People’s Liberation Army, Guo Moruo, a literary expert and previous president of Chinese Academy of Science, and Ba Jin, a well-known Chinese author.
During the Cultural Revolution, large numbers of students were recruited to join various Red Guard groups, many of which were headquartered in various offices and dormitories at SCU. The campus grounds and academic institutions of the University sustained heavy damage as a result of Red Guard attacks on various structures or departments seen as representing the Four Olds or those thought to contain bad or anti-revolutionary elements, such as various members of the faculty and administration. Infighting between various Red Guard factions associated with the student body compounded the damage to campus facilities throughout the more chaotic periods of the 1960s.
There are dormitories for international students on three campuses (Wangjiang Campus, Huaxi campus and Off-Campus Housing) of SCU with people on duty 24 hours. The office of international students assigns special staff to manage the dormitories and help the students deal with problems in their life. Facilities in each dorm on air-conditioner, TV set, furniture, telephone, bathroom, internet access; toilet, bathroom, laundry room, and kitchen on each floor for sharing.