Constantly Improving,Blazing Our Own Path

The motto of Lanzhou University was identified in July, 2007.

On the one hand, the Chinese version of “Constantly Improving” is extracted from “As heaven maintains vigor through movement, a gentleman should constantly strive for self-perfection” from the Book of Change. It is an essential element of the Chinese ethos, and a reason of the successful establishment of Lanzhou University as a unique top university in the less developed western China after ovecoming lots of hardships.

On the other hand, the Chinese version of “Blazing Our Own Path” is an extraction from Yuanmei’s Essays of Suiyuan Garden on Poetry in Qing dynasty. The phrase is a  demonstration of the modern spirit featured by reform and innovation. In 1957, Chairman Mao Zedong praised Xin Shuzhi, former president of Lanzhou University, that “Mr. Xin works hard throughout his lifetime and blazes his own path in the academic world” at the supreme state affairs meeting. It is because of the spirit of “Blazing Our Own Path” that Lanzhou University has transformed its geological disadvantages into a disciplinary superiority: Grassland study.

Such studies as Agriculture, Qinghai-Tibet Plateau Studies, Semi-arid Climate and Environmental Studies, Northwest Minority Studies, and Dunhuang Studies have made great contributions to the nation as well as to the economic and social development of western China.

Time flies. The motto of Lanzhou University, which highly integrates both national spirit and the spirit of the time, has been recognized as a unique feature of Lanzhou University’s spirit, value and style of behavior, becoming an irreplaceable and intangible power in the development of Lanzhou University.

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