USTC: Two USTC Students Admitted to ENS, Ulm

Last year, four students of the China-France Mathematics Talents Class (CFMTC) of the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC) have been admitted to Institut Polytechnique de Paris, now other two students ZHU Qimeng and ZHANG Shengjun of the same class, Class 2019 in its third year, are admitted to Ecole Normale Superieure de Paris (ENS, Ulm), which has always been honored as the “Cradle of Fields Medalists” in the field of mathematics.

The agreement to establish CFMTC was signed by the USTC and the Foundation Mathematics Jacques Hadamard (FMJH) and the Foundation Sciences Mathematics of Paris (FSMP) at the beginning of 2019, with a hope to promote talent cultivation and international collaboration in the field of mathematics. The Consulate General of France in Shanghai have also expedited to a large extent the construction of the program, and led to the establishment of the very first class in September of the same year. Under the agreement framework, at least other 9 candidates in their fourth year will be granted to pursue doctoral study in France with scholarship. Now, CFMTC has quickly become one of USTC’s major paradigm of international talent cultivation program on the university’s way to build a first-class university in the world.

As a four-year program, CFMTC is available to the USTC freshmen who are in good standing. After entering the USTC, based on their competition records on mathematics and physics, and the result of the first math exam in the USTC, the education committee of the Chinese side will make an oral exam to choose about the best 25 students. The students will be given French language courses every week. The French language proficiency of CFMTC student who has completed 1.75-year education shall be equivalent to CEFR Level B2. The students will take 2.5 years to complete the study which is equivalent to the 1.75-year preparatory education of France. The courses of the 1.5 years shall be restricted optional and free optional. The public courses remain as usual and physics will be taught specialized. From the second year, most of mathematics courses will be given by French professors. The Chinese professors include Yang Cao, Shibing Chen, Bangxian Han, Jiayu LI, Yongqi Liang, Xinan Ma.

The Quartier Latin, where the ENS is located, is noted as the very heart of Paris through centuries for its rich intellectual and cultural activity. As a higher education establishment for pre-doctoral and doctoral studies as well as a top-level research center in France, the ENS counts fifteen departments for education and research, spanning the main disciplines in humanities and sciences. At the same time a French Grande Ecole and a university, it is always between the first and third French institutions in many international rankings. The alumni of ENS include 11 Fields medalists, 12 Nobel Prize laureates, 5 Wolf Prize winners and 2 French Presidents. Renowned mathematicians such as A. Weil, E. Cartan,H. Cartan graduated from the ENS, and the School of Bourbaki originated from ENS.

Each year, the ENS receives more than thousands of international applications, but only between 5 and 10% of them are complete with the eligibility criteria, varying from year to year. Only 3 final listed candidates from mainland China are finally admitted to the major of mathematics since the ENS opens 20 positions for international students this year, 10 positions in Sciences including Biology, Chemistry, Earthscience, Computing science, Mathematics, Physics, Cognitive sciences, and 10 positions in Arts and Humanities.