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Grand Challenges Scholars Program (GCSP)

Undergraduate students at the College of Engineering PKU have the unique opportunity to compete in the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) Grand Challenges Scholars Program (GCSP). Grand Challenges Scholars drive their educational experiences towards discovering, exploring, and potentially solving one of the NAE Grand Challenges and earn recognition at graduation from PKU and the National Academy of Engineering.

Four Themes of the NAE Grand Challenges


  • Making solar energy economical
  • Providing energy from fusion
  • Developing carbon sequestration methods
  • Managing the nitrogen cycle
  • Providing access to clean water


  • Engineering better medicines
  • Advancing health informatics
  • Reverse engineering the brain


  • Securing cyberspace
  • Preventing nuclear terror
  • Restoring and improving urban infrastructure

--Joy of Living

  • Enhancing virtual reality
  • Advancing personalize learning
  • Engineering the tools of scientific discovery

Learn more about the NAE Grand Challenges (


Established in 1898, Peking University (PKU) is a comprehensive and national key university which effectively combines research on important scientific subjects with the training of personnel with a high level of specialized knowledge and professional skill. By drawing upon PKU’s vast resources in fundamental and extensive research studies, the College of Engineering has successfully created programs that promote interdisciplinary research and training. It is our hope that the students are able to take different approaches in the pursuit of progress and development if provided with a broad spectrum of knowledge. We encourage students to be innovative in future engineering and technology exploration for the prospect of national socio-economic development. It is our greatest hope that our students will become future leaders and entrepreneurs.

The PKU Grand Challenge Scholars Program aims to cultivate scholars with broaden curriculum and innovative research experiences to address the Grand Challenges, and to educate future engineering leaders and entrepreneurs with global perspectives and social awareness. The College of Engineering at PKU offers strong opportunities and a variety of activities for pursuing and implementing the five major components of GCSP at PKU. In addition, the GCSP at PKU is the first program launched in mainland China. China is experiencing fast economic development with increasing population, which brings unprecedented challenges for engineering. To address the complex Grand Challenges in China will provide valuable experiences for other countries, and the GCSP at PKU will also provide example and experience for expanding it to more universities in China and other Asian countries.