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China: Students learn moral integrity at university

China uses various methods in its effort to combat corruption. One of those is engaging young people to raise awareness of the impact of corruption and finding ways to prevent it.

Since the campus is the right place to learn about morals and integrity, some universities in China require students to take regular courses, training or seminars related to anti-corruption subjects. These courses aim at seeding good moral values in young people as the country’s future leaders.

“It is important for students to have high integrity so that we can combat corruption more easily. The campus is the best place to learn about integrity,” Professor Wei Tang, Secretary of Communist Party of China (CPC) at Beijing Normal University Zhuhai (BNUZ), told journalists during a media briefing recently.

The CPC has played an important role in the running and development of the university. The campus has 6,134 party members with around 2,780 probation members.

BNUZ, located at Tangjiawan, Zhuhai city, has around 22,000 students and 11,000 professors and lecturers. It was jointly established by Beijing Normal University and the Zhuhai Municipal Government under the approval of the Education Ministry in China.

Wei Tang is optimistic that anti-corruption activities are quite effective in raising the self discipline and perseverance that will hopefully prevent the youth from developing a corrupt mentality.

He noted increased awareness among students after participating in a course titled “Theory and Practice of Combating Corruption and Upholding Integrity”. Another effort to combat corruption through the campus is by creating a clean and honest campus. BNUZ has established a commission for disciplinary inspections and supervision to support the goal.

The commission tries to overseeing finance, infrastructure construction and admissions in order to protect them from corruption. It has also set up a mechanism for a petition.

“Corruption cases can be reported via email or a letter. The complaints are carefully handled and investigated, before any punishment,” Ellen Fu, the vice president of BNUZ, said.

Even though there had been no major corruption on the campus so far, Ellen acknowledged that there had been one case when a staff member was found guilty of misappropriating a scholarship budget. Wei Tang admitted that corruption was the biggest issue now, not only in his country but also in the world.

“It takes time to eradicate corruption, but we will keep trying no matter how long it takes,” he said.

Corruption is widespread in China. More than 60,000 people have been sentenced for bribery and corruption since 2008. In 2008, China published a list of stringent anti-corruption rules for public officials ahead of a reshuffle of provincial posts later this month. Chinese leaders have stressed the need to improve the mechanism for preventing, and punishing corruption.

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