By Rebecca Harrison
Ping Wang, associate professor of entomology, has been named to succeed Tang Cornell-China Scholars Program founding director, Norm Scott, biological and environmental engineering, effective November 1. Wang is currently the program’s associate director.
Established in 1999 with support from Martin Tang ’70 and the Tang Family Foundation, the Tang Cornell-China Scholars Program seeks to enhance collaboration in the agricultural and biological sciences between established research programs at select Chinese universities and Cornell University. To date, the program has provided 14 early- to mid-career Chinese researchers the opportunity to further their work with leading agricultural scientists at Cornell.
The program--which has supported research such as development of wheat varieties, sustainable pig production, and microbiology of methane production—has been a great success.
“We did a self-study a few years ago and the responses were overwhelmingly positive from participants,” said Scott. “We’ve actually even been able to have some graduate students come to Ithaca while their faculty members are here, developing further connection between the lab here and the lab there.”
Martin Tang credits much of the program’s success to Scott’s leadership.
“From a standing start, Norm has made this program nationally recognized in China,” noted Tang. “His personal touch has earned the friendship and admiration of all who have participated in the program.”
Incoming director Wang believes Scott’s understanding of a changing geo-political landscape defined his tenure.
“The contacts and collaborations between Cornell and China are at a different scale compared to before Norm.”
“Eventually, not only will these activities enhance and strengthen the Cornell-China tie,” Wang said, “but also aid in global development, Chinese agriculture, and alleviate poverty.”
For his part, Scott hopes to see the “community” of Tang scholars continue to develop and grow under Wang’s directorship from the current 14 participants.
“Norm Scott has done a tremendous job as founding director,” said Kathryn J. Boor, the Ronald P. Lynch Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. “CALS is truly grateful to both Norm for his remarkable leadership and to Martin Tang and the Tang family for their vision and generosity in establishing and endowing the Tang Cornell-China Scholars Program.”
“The Tang Cornell-China Scholars Program is a tangible example of Cornell’s role as land grant university to the world. Upon their return to China, these faculty are engaged in understanding and addressing many of the most important issues and opportunities in agriculture and in China.”
Rebecca Harrison '14 is a writer intern for the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.