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Dean of PKU School of Life Sciences has Luncheon Discussion with Graduate Students

Peking University, Beijing, November 24, 2008: The first Luncheon Discussion between Rao Yi, Dean of the School of Life Sciences and eight graduate students was held in the Office of the Dean, Room 109 of the New Life Sciences Building on November 24th.


In the Discussion, eight graduate students from all five different classes presented their problems in scientific research to reflect the situation of graduates in the School and look for solutions and suggestions from Professor Rao, who is also a world-famous scientist.


A major concern harbored by most graduate students is how to make good scientific research. Dean Rao considered this question in two aspects: one is the project given by the advisor, the other is the thought provided by the student. In Rao’s opinion, the student’s thoughts on the project sometimes may be even better than that given by their advisors. If the advisor was always better than the student, there would be no development in science. However, the advisor always has more experience than the students and thus has better management of the researches. For example, they knew what kind of scientific problems are more valuable at the time, which experiments are worth doing, and how soon a project should be abandoned. Students should make full consideration in balancing the relationship between these two aspects. In order to complete the scientific tasks in time, they would better deal with their own projects in two periods, one is in the beginning of their scientific life, the other being how to organize the time after the achievement of their necessary scientific tasks.


Moreover, the graduate students proposed their questions in dealing with the relationship with the advisors, assessing the value of their candidate research directions, choosing from persistence and alteration of previous projects and so on.


Not only during their student life, but also the future after graduation is important for the students. As there are more people in the field of life sciences than that in need, especially in China, where the biotech industry is not mature yet, the problem for them finding a good career is becoming a serious problem. Therefore, Dean Rao agreed with a student when he suggested that the School make connections with corporations to make more internships available.


This Luncheon Discussion lasted for an hour. Although it was not very long, the graduates treasured the chance as a good opportunity to express their true thoughts directly to the Dean, and thus looking for solutions. Some graduates even had made many preparations, such as collecting suggestions from other graduates around them, for the discussion. Meanwhile, Dean Rao also paid much attention to the Discussion. He answered every question asked as detailed as possible while thinking of better solutions.


There will be other two such Luncheon Discussions in December 3rd and 17th. Another sixteen graduate students would have the opportunity to discuss with Dean Rao about the development of the life sciences in PKU, the schedule of classes, the management of labs, the activities in the School, the construction of the buildings and so on.


Edited By : Yan Jiefei

Translated By : Chen Zhenxia

Source : School of Basic Medical Sciences, PKU