West Liberty University has signed a strategic cooperation agreement with Henan Yinji Investment Group (China) that may open up new avenues of health care education.
“This is an opportunity to develop a new strategic partnership to enhance the health sciences in rural areas of China. West Liberty University was invited to visit and learn about opportunities that exist for a cooperative educational outreach. We are focusing on preparing professionals for health science careers, like nursing, at the investment group’s request,” said WLU President Dr. Stephen Greiner, who signed the agreement a few weeks ago in China.
Greiner visited Zhengzhou City, located in the province of Henan. He took with him the dean of the College of Sciences, Dr. Karen Kettler, and the dean of the Gary E. West College of Business, Dr. Greg Chase. Chase has taught three times in China, prior to joining WLU.
Also in attendance was the chairman of the WLU Board of Governors, Pat Ford. Ford also is the executive director of the Business Development Corporation of the Northern Panhandle. This was Ford’s ninth international business exploration trip.
The WLU delegation found a very receptive audience in China and was welcomed with great courtesy and fanfare.
“The Chinese welcome was a genuine display of friendship and sharing. Eventually, the investment group will build schools that will award degrees in China and it is hopeful that we can be a part of that and provide educational programs to address this need,” Greiner said.
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The visit to China was preceded by a successful earlier meeting this past February when the Chinese leaders visited WLU’s campus, at the suggestion of alumnus Fred Kinder. Kinder, who is formerly from Glen Dale, West Virginia, resides in California and is the owner of an international medical, electronics and meteorology group.
After that successful initial meeting, Greiner and Ford began to plan the trip to Zhengzhou City for further exploration of a partnership. While in China, they participated in the 2019 Asian Economic Development Summit, attended by politicians, ambassadors, business leaders and Chinese and foreign guests.
“We are very excited about this opportunity as it will provide opportunities for West Liberty students and support a global-rural healthcare initiative in the future,” said Kettler.
A commercial trade, cultural tourism, financial services and real estate development entity, Henan Yinji Investment Group was founded in 1993 and is headquartered in Henan, which has a population of 100 million. It has developed into a commercial trade, real estate development, high-end cultural tourism, financial services, property management, mining and medical investment holding group.
In response to the need of China’s aging population and increasing demand for medical services, it hopes to expand investment in medical innovation and high-end medical services and enhance international medical cooperation, while introducing medical personnel training.