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Southeast University

Southeast University
Motto 止于至善[1]
Motto in English
Strive for Perfection[2]
Established originated in 1902, established as an independent school in 1952, renamed Southeast University in 1988.
Type Public
President Dr. Yi Hong
Academic staff
Students 43,643[3]
Undergraduates 16,233[3]
Postgraduates 13,150[3]
Location Nanjing, Jiangsu, China
Campus Urban-Sipailou Campus, Dingjiaqiao Campus
Rural-Jiulonghu Campus

Southeast University (simplified Chinese: 东南大学; traditional Chinese: 東南大學; pinyin: Dōngnán Dàxué, SEU), colloquially Dongda (Chinese: 东大; pinyin: Dōngdà) is a public research university located in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China. It is one of the oldest universities and the first coeducational university in China.[4] It is a member of both Project 985 and Project 211, and sponsored by the Ministry of Education of China aiming to become a well-known world-class university.[4]

SEU has been ranked among the top 20 research universities in China,[5][6] and among the top 500 in the world.[7] In the official subject ranking conducted by the Ministry of Education of China, SEU has been ranked top three nationally in 8 fields including architecture, landscape architecture, urban planning, art history, civil engineering, electronic engineering, transportation engineering and biomedical engineering.[8]

Its predecessor, Sanjiang Normal College, was established in 1902 as a modern university on the campus of an academy which dates back to 258. In 1921, the school changed its name to National Southeast University and became the second national university in China. Later SEU was renamed to National Central University in 1927 and soon became the nation's flagship university.[9] In 1952, the university was split into eight institutions during the communism revolution. And its engineering school, the largest school in terms of faculty number and student enrollment,[10] stayed in its original campus and form Nanjing Institute of Technology, which changed its name back to Southeast University in 1988.

Auditorium of Southeast University


  • History 1
    • Sanjiang Normal College (1902–1905) 1.1
    • Liangjiang Normal College (1905–1911) 1.2
    • National Nanjing Higher Normal School (1915–1923) 1.3
    • National Southeast University (1921–1924) 1.4
    • National Hohai Technology University (1924–1927) 1.5
    • National Central University (1927–1949) 1.6
    • National Nanjing University (1949–1952) 1.7
    • Nanjing Institute of Technology (NIT, 1952–1988) 1.8
    • Southeast University (1988 – present) 1.9
  • Academic 2
    • Rankings 2.1
  • Campus 3
  • Schools and departments 4
  • Athletics 5
  • Notable people and alumni 6
    • Politicians 6.1
    • Scientists 6.2
    • Others 6.3
  • References 7
  • External links 8


The Juniperus chinensis from Six Dynasties

The Imperial Nanjing School, the highest educational institution of kingdom, as the predecessor, was founded in CE 258 in the period of the Three Kingdoms. The imperial school enjoyed the same campus with the current Southeast University since the 14th year of Hongwu reign (CE 1381) in Ming dynasty.

Sanjiang Normal College (1902–1905)

At the end of the 19th century, under the domination of Qing Dynasty, the Chinese society was under the situation of domestic trouble and foreign invasion. 1901, the Qing government began to reform under this situation, and in 1902 issued 'The imperial rules for colleges', and adapted the new modern education system. On May, 30th of the same year, the Liangjiang governor Kunyi Liu submitted a document of preparing colleges to the Qing government, proposing to open normal college in Jiangning (now: Nanjing). In February 1903, the following Liangjiang governor Zhidong Zhang submitted a proposal to open Sanjiang Normal College to government, and authorize Quansun Miu as a representative to Japan for investigation, who later was norminated as the inspector of Sanjiang Normal College and responsible for the project preparation. In September 1903, Sanjiang Normal College was officially started.

Liangjiang Normal College (1905–1911)

Liangjiang Normal College

Due to the ambiguous meaning of the college name which led to several disputes, the Sanjiang Normal College was named as Liangjiang Normal College in 1905. The year after, Ruiqing Li was nominated as the principal, who closed the junior normal subjects, and added the public subjects, professional subjects, and also created the first hand-painting subject in China. Until 1907, there had already been Geography-History department, Chinese-Foreign Language Department, Mathematic-Physics- Chemistry Department, and Agriculture Department. At the end of 1911, due to the breaking out of Xinhai Revolution, Liangjiang Normal College was almost closed.

National Nanjing Higher Normal School (1915–1923)

On 15 July 1914, Guojun Han nominated Qian Jiang as the principal, who was responsible for the starting up of Nanjing Higher Normal School in the same site of Liangjiang Normal College. Qiang Jiang employed a U.S scholar Bingwen Guo as the dean of teaching, Rong Chen as the advisor, and sent both of them to the Europe to investigate the education system and recruit new teachers. On 10 September 1915, Nanjing Higher Normal School was officially started. In December 1919, Nanjing Higher Normal School formally recruited 8 female students and 50 more female visiting students, being the first school in China allowing both females and males to study together.

National Nanjing Higher Normal School, built in 1909

National Southeast University (1921–1924)

In September 1918, Guo Bingwen was the president in the south division. On 7 April 1920, Guo Bingwen proposed at the school meeting in the South high-division, in favor of the foundation of the "Southeast University Preparatory Committee.",based on the founder of a national university. In September, Guo Bingwen proposed to the State Council and the Ministry of Education to apply for the establishment of Southeast University, and in December it was approved. On 6 June 1921, the Board of Southeast University was established, Guo Bingwen as president, and the university was officially opening in September. In December, the school council decided that Nanjing Higher Normal School would be incorporated into the Southeast University. Southeast University, based on the foundation of Nanjing Normal Higher School, until 1923, had possessed arts and sciences, Education, engineering, agriculture, business totaling more than 20 lines in 5 subjects.

National Hohai Technology University (1924–1927)

In 1924, the engineering school of National Southeast University merged with the water conservancy school Hohai Engineering School to form National Hohai Technology University, with Mao Yisheng as president.

National Central University (1927–1949)

In 1927, National Hohai Technology University along with several other schools merged with National Southeast University to form the later National Central University.

National Nanjing University (1949–1952)

At the beginning of 1949, some professors did not flee to Taiwan. In April 1949, the People Liberation Army occupied Nanjing and the Nanjing Military Committee took over the National Central University. On Aug, 8th, 1949, The name of National Central University was changed to National Nanjing University, until October 1950, the name was changed to Nanjing University again.

Nanjing Institute of Technology (NIT, 1952–1988)

In 1952, People's Republic of China began a national adjustment of its colleges. In Nanjing, the adjustment was mainly on Nanjing University and University of Nanking. Nanjing Institute of Technology was formed in the original site of National Central University from the previous Engineering Department (at the time, the biggest department) of Nanjing University and Agriculture Department of University of Nanking, also including Chemistry Department and Electrical Machine Department. Later there were also some relevant subjects from Jiaotong University, Zhejiang University, Shandong University, Xiamen University, Fudan University, and Private Jiangnan University merged into Nanjing Institute of Technology.

Southeast University (1988 – present)

In June 1988, Nanjing Institute of Technology was renamed as 'Southeast University', starting to convert from a technology institute to a technology-featured comprehensive university. As of 2000, the name Nanjing Institute of Technology is used by a different institution.


Zhongda Hall, the building of SEU School of Architecture
Mei'an, the building of SEU School of the Arts
Mengfang Library, built in 1923

Southeast University is one of only 32 universities directly administered by the Chinese Department of Education, which are considered the top class universities in China. The university has 16,000 undergraduate students and 10,000 graduate students in over 30 schools and departments. The admission to SEU is very competitive. Normally the university enrolls top 2% high school students from nationwide to its undergraduate programs, and top 5% undergraduate students to its graduate program. Most students are recruited by engineering or some big schools such as School of Mechanical Engineering, School of Energy & Environmental Engineering, School of Information Science & Engineering, School of Civil Engineering, School of Computer Science & Engineering, School of Economics & Management, as well as School of Transportation Engineering. The rest students are enrolled by some smaller schools and departments like School of Automation, School of Electronic Science, and Department of Physics.

There are about 5,600 faculty members in Southeast University. Among all the faculty members, there are 8 members of Chinese Academy, 25 "Changjiang Scholars", 1 fellow of State Department Degree Committee, 9 members of State Department Degree Committee, 31 distinguished national youth research scientists, 7 members (ranking 2nd nationwide) of "863 Projects" expert committee, and 57 excellent Department of Education research scientists.

The university has 64 undergraduate programs, 206 master programs, 109 doctoral programs, as well as 15 postdoctoral research sites. In the most recent official rankings summary, 6 programs are top 5 and another 6 programs are top 10 nationwide. Especially the School of Biomedical Science & Engineering ranks first place. The university has a top research ability. There are 10 National First-class Academic programs, 6 potential National First-class Academic Programs. 3 National Research Labs, 1 National Professional Lab, 2 National Engineering Research Centers, and 7 Department of Education First-class Labs.

In 2006, the research funds for the university is 600 million Chinese Yuan, which lists the 7th place in the country.


Southeast University is one of the top 100 universities in scientific research and development in China.[11] It has over 20 national or provincial research institutes, with a number of key research bases. Over the last decade, it has completed more than 1000 research projects, of which over 500 have been awarded the national, provincial or municipal science and technology prizes. Its research fund exceeded 1.1 billion yuan in 2010, which placed 11th nationwide. The SEU Architecture Design and Research Institute, which is one of the few national first-class design institutes, has undertaken various major projects. The SEU-affiliated Zhongda Hospital was set up in 1935 and rated as "Class A Grade 3" by the Ministry of Public Health.

In 2012 Chinese national university ranking edited by Wu Shulian, Southeast University was placed 17th in the national university ranking in China, together with other 18 universities as China's top tier national universities.[12]

In 2010, according to one of the two most world-famous scientific journals "Nature" (Nature Publishing Index 2010 China), the report ranked Southeast University as the 8th among all domestic research institutes.[13]

In 2010 QS top university ranking, it was ranked:

87th overall among Asian universities[14]

76th in engineering and I.T. among Asian universities[15]

301–350th in engineering and I.T worldwide[16]

In 2007, Southeast University was listed 443rd among world universities.[17]


There are 3 main campuses of Southeast University namely Sipailou Campus, Jiulonghu campus and Dingjaiqiao campus. Sipailou (Xuanwu District) and Dingjiaqiao campus (Gulou district) are in Nanjing city and Jiulonghu campus in suburbs of Nanjing( Jiangning District).

The Sipailou Campus of Southeast University is the flagship campus that is inherited from National Central University. It is located at 2 Sipailou, Nanjing, China. In 1988, Pukou Campus which located in Pukou Campus across the Yangtze River was opened as another site mainly for the education of first and second year students (freshman and sophomores). However, in 2008 Pukou Campus was separated from Southeast University and was then acquired by Cheng Xian Institute.

In 2001, SEU acquired three other colleges in Nanjing. They are: Nanjing Railway Medical College, Nanjing College of Advanced Transportation, as well as Nanjing Advanced School of Geology. Nanjing Railway Medical College became the School of Medicine at Southeast University after it merged with SEU. The medical school is located in Dingjiaqiao.

In 2005 when Jiulonghu Campus which located in Jiangning District was founded, the authority of Pukou Campus was transferred to the Chengxian College of Southeast University. Most of the undergraduate students and master students are studying at Jiulonghu Campus currently. After Jiulonghu Campus was opened, the Sipailou Campus basically includes some most important research institutes and administrations of the university. Jiulonghu Campus is situated in the south of the Jiangning Technology Development District, to the east of Suyuan Avenue, west of Shuanglong Street, and south of Jiyin Street. It is around 20 kilometers away from the Sipailou Campus, with an area of 3749mu. The architecture design of Jiulonghu Campus follows the basis of Southeast University's culture, characterized in the combination of public teaching and research which compromises the merit of Chinese and Western styles, forming a green and active university community. The total building area in Jiulonghu Campus is 574 thousand square meters with the investment of 1.6 billion yuan.

Schools and departments

Most of these websites are in Chinese:

  • Office of President: [36]
  • Education Foundation: [37]
  • University history: [38]
  • Chien-Shiung Wu Memorial Hall: [39]
  • Galileo training and application research center: [40]
  • General Alumni Association of Southeast University: [41]
  • School of Architecture: [42]
  • School of Mechanical Engineering: [43]
  • School of Energy & Environment Engineering: [44]
  • School of Information Science & Engineering: [45]
  • School of Civil Engineering: [46]
  • School of Electronic Science & Engineering: [47]
  • Department of Mathematics & Applied Mechanics: [48]
  • School of Automation: [49]
  • School of Computer Science & Engineering: [50]
  • Department of Physics: [51]
  • School of Biological Science & Medical Engineering: [52]
  • School of Material Science & Engineering: [53]
  • School of Economics & Management: [54]
  • School of Electrical Power Engineering: [55]
  • School of Foreign Languages: [56]
  • School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering: [57]
  • School of Transportation Engineering: [58]
  • School of Instrument Science & Engineering: [59]
  • School of Art: [60]
  • School of Humanities: [61]
  • School of Law: [62]
  • School of Medicine: [63]
  • School of Public Health: [64]
  • Department of Physical Education: [65]
  • School of Continuing Education: [66]
  • College of Software Engineering: [67]
  • Cheng Xian College: [68]
  • College of Integrated Circuit: [69]
  • Wu Jian Xiong (CHIEN-SHIUNG WU) Collage: [70]


Notable people and alumni


  • Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石), President of Republic of China
  • Huang Wei (黄卫), vice chairman of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, the former Vice Minister of Construction (Civil Engineering)
  • Zhenya Wang, Australian senator


  • Prof. Zhang Zhushan, Chemist
  • Wu Chien-Shiung (吳健雄), world famous physics scientist, known as the "Oriental Marie Curie", with β-decay experiments demonstrating that in the weak interaction, symmetry is not conserved (Physics)
  • Huang Weilu (黄纬禄), national "bombs and one satellite" hero, Imperial College, University of London Master Radio (Electrical Engineering)
  • Ren Xinmin (任新民), the state "bombs and one satellite" hero, Master of Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan, Engineering Mechanics, PhD (Chemical Engineering)
  • Mao Yisheng (茅以升), Famous Bridges expert
  • Zhou Ren (周仁), Metallurgy and ceramics scientists
  • Liu Dunzhen, Architects, pioneer in the Chinese Architectural History, pioneer in the study of ancient buildings in China, a major founder of modern Chinese architecture, the important education pioneer. One of the "Master of Architecture Five."
  • Yang Tingbao (杨廷宝), Architects, architectural educators, one of the pioneers of modern architectural design in China
  • Qi Kang (齐康), famous Architects
  • Wu Liangyong (吴良镛), Architects
  • Jian Bai Xia (夏坚白), mapping scientists
  • Fang Jun (方俊), Geophysicists
  • Chen Wenxi (陈文禧), Machinery expert
  • Yang Liming (杨立铭), Nuclear physicist
  • Shu Guangji (舒光冀), materials scientist
  • Wu Zhongwei (吴中伟), Materials scientist
  • Qian Zhong Han (钱钟韩), Automatic control scientist
  • Zhang Zhongjun (张钟俊), Control theorists
  • Ni Shanda (倪尚达), Electronic scientist
  • Hu Minggui (胡名桂), Electronic scientist name
  • Qian Feng Zhang (钱凤章), Electronic scientist
  • Tian Binggeng (田炳耕), Electronic scientist
  • He Zhenya (何振亚), Information scientists
  • Liu Shenggang (刘盛纲), Electronic scientist
  • Yu Wei (韦钰), Electronic scientist
  • Xia Pei Su (夏培肃), Computer scientists
  • Ni Guangnan (倪光南), Computer scientists
  • Huang Yushan (黄玉珊), Aviation scientist
  • Gao Hong (高鸿), Chemist
  • Liang Xiaotian (梁晓天), Chemist
  • Min Enze (闵恩泽), Chemical scientist
  • Shi Jun (时钧), Chemical scientist
  • Jin Baozhen (金宝桢), Mechanics Scientist
  • Min Guirong (闵桂荣), space technology experts
  • Ding Henggao (丁衡高), Small scale high-precision machinery expert
  • Yang Huanming (杨焕明), Genetics experts
  • He Lin (贺林), Geneticist
  • Hans-Werner Gessmann (汉斯沃勒格斯曼), Clinical Psychologist, founder and pioneer of humanistic psychodrama

Since the foundation, Southeast University has cultivated dozens of faculties for Chinese Academic of Science and National Academic of Engineering. Therefore, here not to list all.


  • Yung Ho Chang (张永和), Owner of 'Architecture Prize' awarded by American Academy of Arts, Faculty of the U.S. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Architecture (Department of Architecture, 81)
  • Yuan Chun: Graduate from Southeast University, studied in Germany, a pioneer to promote the militarization education in China, The first to open female college students swimming lessons which abolished the old Chinese prohibition of female college students to swim
  • Cheng Dengke: Graduate from Southeast University, studied in Germany, a pioneer to promote the militarization education in China, a pioneer Chinese women's gymnastics
  • Cheng Taining (程泰宁), Chief Architect in Chinese United Engineering Corporation, Host of Chinese United Cheng Training Architectural Design Institute(56)
  • Jinjiong Hua, U.S. President's Award winner, the U.S. National Science Foundation award winner (Mechanical Engineering)
  • Ye Mao, director of Cornell University (administered by the College of Accounting)
  • Hualong Xing, China Electronic Information Industry Group Corporation chairman Sang Fei (Radio Engineering)
  • Wu Haijun, Shenzhen New World Industrial Co., Ltd., Shenzhen Hasee chairman (Master of Power Engineering)
  • Harry Shum (沈向洋), Microsoft's senior vice president and chief scientist of the National Natural Science Foundation judges (Youth Class)
  • Mr. Xu, Kingdee International Software Group Co., Ltd. Chairman and chief executive officer
  • Lin Jiaxi, CEO of IFC investment adviser
  • Min Yu, Ideal Group (Asia) Co., Ltd. Founder
  • Meng Jianmin (孟建民), China Architecture Design Master, president of Shenzhen Construction General Institute
  • ZHANG Gui-ping, chairman of Suning Universal Group (Suning Group) ZHANG Gui-ping
  • Chenxing Han, South East Qixia Construction (Group) Company Party branch secretary and general manager, senior engineer
  • Sun Chao, chairman of Sun Dairy Co., Ltd. (Electronic Engineering)


  1. ^ "对校训“止于至善”的说明 (Chinese)". Retrieved 14 July 2014. 
  2. ^ "Glance at SEU". Retrieved 14 July 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c d "提示信息". Retrieved 3 July 2015. 
  4. ^ a b "东南大学简介". 东南大学. 10 May 2012. Retrieved 2012-10-25. 
  5. ^ a b "武大版中国一流大学榜单出炉". 网易. 22 February 2012. Retrieved 2013-02-10. 
  6. ^ a b "武书连2012中国一流大学名单". 搜狐. 21 December 2011. Retrieved 2013-02-10. 
  7. ^ a b c "ARWU ranking of Southeast University". ARWU. 21 December 2011. Retrieved 2013-02-10. 
  8. ^ a b "我校在2012全国学科评估中获得3项第一". SEU. 29 January 2013. Retrieved 2013-02-10. 
  9. ^ 炸弹下壮大的中央大学 王运来。
  10. ^ 江苏省教育志编纂委员会. 江苏省教育大事记(1949—1988). 江苏教育出版社. 1989:33–35
  11. ^
  12. ^ "武书连2012中国一流大学名单". Retrieved 3 July 2015. 
  13. ^
  14. ^ "QS University Rankings: Asia". Top Universities. Retrieved 3 July 2015. 
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^

External links

  • Official Website 东南大学 (Chinese)
  • Official website (English)
  • University History
  • 3d map of SEU (Chinese)
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