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New Year of 2021 Greetings

Updated: Jan 24, 2021

1st January 2021

Dear Colleagues and Friends

We are embracing the new year of 2021 when the year of 2020 is drawing close. The year of 2020 is phenomenal and unusual in many ways. Happy New Year of 2021 to everyone!

COVID-19 has had a profound impact on the world economy, the global governance system, the international political landscape and the global higher education. However, from a historical, dialectical and systematic perspective, the interdependence of human survival still exists, the basic development elements of maintaining the operation of the global higher education and the world peace, dignity and equality will not be swayed by the virus. When MOOC was launched in 2008, only twenty-five students attended the course on the campus of the University of Manitoba while an additional 2,300 students from around the world participated online delivery. Hardly anybody could predicate that around one billion students had to study online in 2020 after 12 years of the birth of MOOC. With the outbreak of COVID-19, technology-enhanced learning has been rapidly adopted globally by education institutions which play a key role for the continuity of the education and learning. Not only so, more emerging online innovative universities have begun to penetrate into the global higher education systems which post challenge to the traditional university model of 800 years old. No doubt that this huge impact caused by the pandemic would ultimately lead to a great revolution in the global higher education.

My Idea in Creating an ELITE O2O Innovation University originated from 2016. I feel very much honoured to deliver my keynote speech as a signal of the formal start of the journey in creating this university at China Association of Higher Education (CAHE) Annual International Conference, 22nd November, 2020 - Perspective of ELITE O2O Innovation University: A Great Transformation and Revolution in the Global Higher Education in Post COVID-19 Era along with my close friends and colleagues who support my initiative. My idea of creating an O2O innovation university emerged when I was the President and Vice Chancellor of Sias University in China. I presented a Working Paper entitled as ELITE Initiative in Creating an Innovative and Entrepreneurial University in the Global Higher Education in MoE Conference, Wenzhou, China, 2016. This idea grew gradually and developed further and became more mature with the outbreak of COVID-19 during 2020.

Our vision is to create a globally-connected ELITE O2O Innovation University in Cambridge, the heart of innovation, in the area of innovation, technology and entrepreneurship, cultivating future humanities and innovation, tackling the challenges and opportunities between west and east.

Our Mission is to create an excellent international humanities, innovation and entrepreneurship, digitalization and business management institution with far-reaching influence in the global arena, and to develop future leaders and managers.

· Globally, to building a world-class institution of higher learning, maintaining an international frontier in selected fields of teaching and research.

· Nationally, to build an excellent humanities, innovation, technology, entrepreneurship and business management university.

· Locally, to work with government, business and industry as well as community in building an innovation-oriented society.

What is ELITE?

ELITE is an acronym of e-learning of innovation, technology and entrepreneurship within an O2O Innovation University in the global higher education. Almost all the universities and colleges are currently delivering courses online based upon the MOOC experiences since the outbreak of Covid-19. In fact, there is similarities of online delivery around the globe as universities and colleges have been forced to do so. Our intention of establishment of ELITE O2O (online and offline) Innovative Education Platform is an exploration of an innovative education pedagogy of integrating the delivery of programmes, knowledge, contents and education ethos with a global vision embedded in the teaching and learning strategy built into the technological system of O2O innovation university. This technological innovation system demonstrates how various features and objectives of innovative and entrepreneurial university can be created, translated, articulated and achieved in a learning organization context. The distinctiveness of this system is to highlight that the teaching and learning mode is decided not only with the impact of the virus but also by the nature of knowledge. Explicit knowledge is delivered online while tacit knowledge is transferred through face-to-face.

ELITE Innovation College Cambridge (EICC), in many respects, is regarded as a globally-connected innovative and entrepreneurial university. With our forward-looking global vision we are well positioned in the global higher education in the 21st century.

The Global Response to my initiative is phenomenal and beyond my expectation. Many colleagues and friends around the world showed their great willingness and enthusiasms in supporting and sharing my vision in the creation of this university. The synopsis of my keynote speech ELITE O2O Innovation University: A Great Transformation and Revolution in the Global Higher Education which was up-loaded on, has received enormous positive responses and excellent comments around the world including former expert of Department of Association of Vietnamese Universities and Colleges and China Association of Higher Education (See endorsement from CAHE).

I am deeply inspired and sincerely moved by the enthusiasm shown around the globe and the overwhelming response to my initiative in creating this university. Time will tell that this university born in the heart of innovation, Cambridge, during the pandemic will create a history with a unique vision to lead and push innovation.

Progress Made so Far

Within 5 weeks of time since the announcement of the formal launch of creation of elite O2O innovation university in Cambridge, we have received congratulations and support and encouragement globally and signed half a dozen MoUs with organizations around the world, notably from China, Germany, Slovenia, US, Canada, Singapore. These collaboration partners include universities, colleges, high school, education management and recruitment firms, educational technology-software providers, investors, etc. With such an inspiration, we are very much encouraged to proceed with the creation of this globally-connected elite O2O innovation university in Cambridge.

Christmas Virtual Drink Conference Many thanks for colleagues’ attending our Christmas virtual drink conference. The pro-active participation of senior colleagues , who are based in the different cities in the global village, including Sydney, Singapore, Zhuhai, Shanghai, Beijing, Slovenia, Paris, Newcastle, London, Windsor, Swanage, New York, Vancouver, and attended the conference on 23rd December, demonstrates that we are well-positioned to create this globally-connected ELITE O2O Innovation University. I was pleased that we could have a toast together to our university and to 2021 and good health to everyone. I feel extremely fortunate to be working with amazing team members in the global village, who are innovative and entrepreneurial and show their commitment, engagement and dedication to this university.

2. New Year Resolution

With the foundation that we have been building, we continue our solid work in teaching and learning, recruitment of staffs and students, building our O2O university with a technological innovation system, includ