The election of “Good Teachers and Helpful Friends” is an activity initiated by the Association of Graduate Students of Tsinghua University in 1998. Postgraduate students vote to select outstanding teachers who “lead students by morality, teach students with profound knowledge, benefit students as their friend and take educating students as the foundation”.
The election for the 18th group of “Good Teachers and Helpful Friends” lasted for four months. After pre-nomination, formal nomination, voting review and final review, a total of 47 teachers from 39 departments were elected as “Good Teachers and Helpful Friends”. Professor Kang Chongqing from the Department of Electrical Engineering and Applied Electronics (EEA) was successfully elected! This is the third time that Professor Kang Chongqing has been elected as a “Good Teacher and Helpful Friend” by Tsinghua University.
Kang Chongqing, Professor of EEA of Tsinghua University, has been teaching for 25 years. He is now the dean of EEA, president of Energy Internet Innovation Research Institute of Tsinghua University, president of Tsinghua Sichuan Energy Internet Research Institute, IEEE Fellow, IET Fellow and CSEE Fellow, winner of the National Fund for Outstanding Youth, candidate of talents leading scientific and technological innovation in the national “Ten Thousand Talents Program”, winner of Award for Outstanding Contribution to China’s China Electric in 2018, winner of IEEE PES Power System Reliability Award in 2021 and winner of IET Achievement Medal in 2021.
“Self-breakthrough and diversified development, serve the country and create the future”, this is the message of Mr. Kang Chongqing to the students. He has trained more than 50 graduate students, including 18 doctoral students and more than 30 master students. These students are now active in universities, enterprises, governments and R&D institutions at home and abroad, taking on important responsibilities in teaching, scientific research and management positions.
1. Leading students by morality
Mr. Kang is not only an academic guide, but also a good friend in life. He has a good habit and patience to guide students in scientific research, that is, no matter how busy he is, he will always take time to have an one-to-one in-depth conversation with each of his students every week. This habit makes him well aware of each student’s scientific research progress and life dynamics.
At the beginning, some students were slow to enter the state of scientific research, and some were not used to this kind of conversation, feeling as if a deadline was imposed on them every week, urging them to keep learning, which invisibly added a lot of pressure to everyone. But gradually, everyone found that Mr. Kang did not want to accelerate their work progress in this way, but hoped to provide timely and effective help against their difficulties in work and life.
Mr. Kang Chongqing took a group photo with students on Teachers’ Day
2. Teach students with profound knowledge
Mr. Kang is strict and careful in academic research and teaching. In class, he explains difficult things in simple terms with his profound thinking. In scientific research, he guides carefully and innovates. Mr. Kang’s students said that the most impressive thing was the wedding gift Mr. Kang gave to the graduates. On the day of the wedding, Mr. Kang will send a pair of special and creative couplet, which often combines the couple’s hometown, growth experience, specialties and hobbies. Mr. Kang explains the multi-layered meaning of wedding couplet as if he was explaining a doctoral dissertation, which often shocked all the guests and friends present. Later, the students learned that in order to create wedding couplets, Mr. Kang often started thinking several months in advance until he fixed the theme, implications, puns and auspicious words one by one, and everyone was deeply touched!
In addition, at the graduation ceremony every year, Mrs. Kang will carefully prepare a message for the students, skillfully use professional language to send off the graduates, and encourage the students to realize self-breakthrough and diversified development, serve the country and create the future.
Mr. Kang’s words of advice to the students graduated in 2020
Mr. Kang’s words of advice to the students graduated in 2020
A group photo at Mr. Kang’s birthday
3. Benefit students as their friend
Mr. Kang is also very approachable in his daily work. Once there was a year-end tea party in the group, and a student was unable to attend party because his grandpa was suddenly ill. After coming back, the student felt sorry about not attending the part, thinking that Mr. Kang would criticize him. Unexpectedly, as soon as he met Mr. Kang, Mr. Kang told the student that “family love is the most precious emotion for a person, and we must cherish the family”, he further asked the student to “try to do some housework when you go home during the Chinese New Year” and told him that “no one can base himself upon the society without being grateful to his parents”. These words gratified all the students in the group, and they felt that Mr. Kang is always kind to the students in life.
4. Take educating students as the foundation
I am the first doctoral student of Mr. Kang. At the beginning of scientific research, Mr. Kang told me that young people must first learn to be a man before learning knowledge. He taught me many principles of being a man and learning knowledge through teaching by personal example as well as verbal instruction. As early as when I was a doctoral student, I applied for the State Grid project one year, we spent a lot of energy applying and preparing for the project, and we were very confident of that the project would be approved. But in final review, we knew that only 2 or 3 projects of our team can be approved while another professor in the group applied for another project. In order to avoid competition within the department, Mr. Kang voluntarily withdrew from the project application. After I graduated and stayed in the university to take up a teaching position, Mr. Kang often told me that “a man must be humble as much as possible”, which has become my motto as a teacher.
— Said Zhang Ning, a Ph.D student of Mr. Kang admitted in 2007 and now a tenured associate professor of Tsinghua University