Beijing University of Agriculture is the exclusive ordinary institution of higher education in the city of Beijing which specializes in granting bachelors’ degrees in different branches of learning in the realms of farming and forestry studies. Its history is traced back to 1956, when its predecessor, entitled Hebei Tongzhou Agricultural School, was renamed as Beijing Agricultural School later in 1958. In 1961, the school moved to its current premises. In 1965, it was renamed as Beijing University of Agricultural Labor. During the tragic “cultural evolution” period, its operations were suspended. In 1978, its reconstruction work was launched and completed in its current premises; the name “Beijing University of Agriculture” was resumed, too. In 1998, the university qualified itself in the examination by the State Ministry of Education and was thus allowed to offer bachelor’s degrees.
The university comprises10 departments，namely Biotechnology， Plant Science & Technology，Animal Science & Technology，Economics & Trade，Landscape Design & Forestry，Food Science，Computer Science & Engineering ，Humanities & Social Sciences，Basic Courses，Foreign Languages, and three secondary Colleges(College of Higher Vocational Education, College of Continual Education, College of International Education). Nowadays, it offers bachelor’s degrees in 22 disciplines and 8 postgraduate’s degrees (in pomology, clinical veterinary , Crop Genetics and Breeding , vegetable science, basic veterinary medicine,management of agricultural economy, ornamental horticulture and landscape planning, Farm Products Processing and storage). In particular, the university’s programs of pomology ,clinical veterinary medicine, management of agricultural economy, Farm Products Processing and storage have ranked exceptionally high, compared to those offered by other higher education institutes in the country. Other extensively acknowledged programs offered by the university cover: crop genetics and breeding, garden plants and ornamental gardening, economic management over farming and forestry, agricultural products processing and storage engineering. The University has established three Beijing Key Laboratories of New Technology in Agriculture Application, Crop Genetics and Breeding , New Countryside Construction.Besides, the university has set up such scientific research organs as a Research Institute of Crop Genetics & Breeding, a Research Institute of Pomology, a Research Institute of Avian Diseases, a Research Institute of Rural Economy, and a Research Institute of Urban Agriculture, as well as an International Training Center for Traditional Veterinarians of Chinese Medicine.
The university is nestled in the northern suburbs of Beijing, adjacent to the Huilongguan Cultural District to the south and Zhongguancun Life Science Park to the north. Covering a land area of 760,000 square meters, the university is endowed with a beautiful environment, featuring agreeable landscaping, flourishing flowers & trees, and a tranquil ambience. In fact, it has honored as a “Work Unit with a garden-like environment” by Beijing Municipal Government. The university is furnished with a whole gamut of teaching facilities, and has built up various kinds of ordinary and professional laboratories, audio-visual learning classrooms, multimedia classrooms, and computer rooms. Among others, its Laboratory for New Types of Applied Agricultural Technologies has been authorized as one of the leading labs of it’s type in Beijing. In addition, it has erected nearly 71 permanent off-campus bases, where students can conduct scientific research efforts, production work or practice their skills learnt in class. The library in the university hosts 469,60 books. So far, the university has built up a Campus Intranet. Furthermore, it is equipped with a relatively comprehensive range of sports facilities, such as a football pitch, basketball courts, a swimming pool, and a standard wholly-plastics ground athletics field, etc. The university publishes a journal under its name at regular intervals.
The university has a high-caliber teaching faculty. So far, it employs 402 teachers, including 44 professors, 128 associate professors, constituting 42.8% in the total; holders of a doctoral or a master’s degree taking up 67.7% in the total.
Up to date, the university houses students nearly 8000 majoring in different disciplines, including under- graduate students and postgraduate students. Nearly 2000 students enrolled in higher vocational education programs. The university has already formed a multi-layered educational system of its own, which mainly features undergraduate programs, and also comprises a variety of other programs (such as postgraduate ones, vocational skills training ones, and adult training ones). The ultimate task of the university is to train up qualified people with solid practical skills and extensive academic abilities to serve the city’s needs for developing a modern agriculture. So far, it has instigated a glorious tradition characterized by its “persistence despite difficulties, hard efforts at practical work, utmost pursuit of scientific advancement, and satisfaction of quality education as needed by the multitude at grassroots”. Since 1978, it has trained up more than 10,000 talents for Beijing, most of whom have become backbone specialists in such realms as grassroots production work, scientific research, business operations and corporate management, etc. Besides, many of the graduates from this university have turned out cadres for their respective organizations, and contributed heavily to the city’s economic construction and social development.
To address the concrete characteristics of urban economic mode in Beijing’s suburbs, the university has actively launched efforts on the fronts of scientific research, dissemination of technologies, facilitation of agricultural development and the city’s positive evolution by means of the latest science and technology, and already achieved prominent benefits in economic, social and ecological terms. For three consecutive years, the university has been honored as a “Nationally advanced pilot collective with outstanding performance in facilitating the implementation of the State’s ‘reinvigoration of economy in rural areas by force of science and technology’ project”, and won many other honorary titles such as a “Nationally advanced and exemplary collective in implementation of the State’s ‘dissemination of agricultural science and technology’ project”, an “Advanced collective with outstanding performance in making a fusion of production work, scientific research and personnel training in Beijing City”, and an “Advanced work unit with outstanding performance in supporting the economic construction in mountainous regions in Beijing Municipality” multiple times. Moreover, the university has won the Golden Bridge Award for its excellent performance in organizing engineering work.
In practice, the university adheres to its motto “offering quality education to learners from all walks of life and meeting the social needs for educational service to the maximum extent”, and places importance on intensifying its cultural exchanges with the rest of the world and cooperating with international partners. For instance, it has struck up partnerships with multiple Colleges and universities in the UK, Japan, USA, Australia and Kazakstan. In particular, the university and Harper Adams University College in the UK have jointly initialized a “3+1” cooperative education project.
The university attaches importance to furnishing its students with various kinds of skills and solid moral integrity. In fact, its students have won multiple honors and awards in different kinds of contests and competitions held in Beijing City. For instance, a “social practice team” comprising some students of the university has been honored as an “Excellent team of university students’ social practice in Beijing”; and the university has been honored as an “Advanced higher education organization with outstanding performance in organizing students’ social practice”. In the meantime, the university attaches great importance to the moral education of its students, and endeavors to strike up a wholesome on- campus culture. In succession, it has won such honorary titles as a “Civilized campus in Beijing Municipality” and an “Outstanding work unit in pursuit of spiritual civilization in Beijing”, etc.
By 2010, the university aims to give prominence to its academic programs in the agricultural discipline, and offer a wide variety of other programs in the disciplines of industry, commerce, management science, law, liberal arts and other branches of science learning. In addition, it intends to enable certain academic programs to measure up to the nationally leading levels, and turn out a well- thought-of university of farming and forestry studies with a sound reputation at home.