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Good Teachers Are Worth Their Weight in Gold
NTHU recently celebrated its 106th anniversary and the 61st anniversary of its reestablishment in Taiwan. As part of the celebration, NTHU and Tsinghua University in Beijing held a joint exhibition of the letters, manuscripts, and calligraphy of a number of their notable alumni. Titled “An Exhibition of the Letters of Tsinghua Scholars,” amongst the many items on display was a handwritten document by Mei Yi-Chi, the first president of NTHU when it was reestablishment in Taiwan. From Mei’s letter we catch a glimpse of the many difficulties he had to surmount in bringing his task to completion, especially in connection with finding well-qualified teachers.
 
In a letter written by Hu Shi to his friend’s daughter, he offers the following timeless guidance: “You’re a fine child, and you need not worry about falling behind. Be diligent, but don’t forget to play and walk a lot; for a good health is essential for making rapid progress.”
 
The exhibition ran until May 10 on the ground floor of the Main Library, and included over 60 items by scholars who have made notable contributions to academia and society as a whole. Amongst the most interesting items on display are those written by the “Four Luminaries of Chinese Studies”: Liang Qichao, Wang Guowei, Chen Yinke, and Chao Yuanren.
 
Lin Furen, director of the NTHU Library, said that in November last year the idea for the joint exhibition was proposed by the Art Museum of Tsinghua University in Beijing, and then picked up by Professor Yang Rubing of the Department of Chinese Language and Literature.
 
The exhibition includes fascinating documents written by a wide range of eminent scholars, including Nobel laureates.
 
Director Lin pointed out that one of the most significant documents in the exhibit was a memorandum handwritten by Mei Yi -Chi relating to the construction of the Physics Department, the nuclear reactor, and various other school buildings, as well as faculty recruitment and the procurement of essential equipment.
 
From a letter written by Chu Ziqing, we learn how, despite his straightened circumstances, he somehow managed to send a nominal amount of money as wedding gift to his beloved nephew. In 1948 Chu Ziqing famously refused to accept US relief grain, but died later that year due to illness.
 
In conjunction with the exhibition, on the afternoon of April 21 a symposium was held featuring a number of enlightening lectures by noted scholars from both sides of the Taiwan Strait.
 
A memorandum written by Mei Yi -Chi relating to the construction of the Physics Department.

A memorandum written by Mei Yi -Chi relating to the construction of the Physics Department.


A memorandum written by Mei Yi -Chi relating to the construction of the Physics Department.

A memorandum written by Mei Yi -Chi relating to the construction of the Physics Department.

A letter written by Hu Shi for Tao Weizhen.

A letter written by Hu Shi for Tao Weizhen.

Visitors at An Exhibition of the Letters of Tsinghua Scholars.

Visitors at An Exhibition of the Letters of Tsinghua Scholars.

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