Fudan University was established in 1905 as Fudan Public School. It was the first institution of higher education to be founded by a Chinese person. The two characters, fù (“return”) and dàn (“dawn”) were borrowed from A Commentary on The Classic of History （《尚书大传·虞夏传》）, of which the part on the Yu and the Xia dynasties mentions: “Brilliant are the sunshine and moonlight, again the morning radiance returns at dawn.” In 1917, the institution was renamed Fudan University, which has been kept ever since.
Fudan upholds the spirit of patriotism, solidarity, service, and sacrifice. Its motto is scientia et studium, quaestio et cogitatio, which means rich in knowledge and tenacious of purposes, inquiring with earnestness and reflecting with self-practice. With a time-honored tradition of academic independence and free exploration, the University is distinguished by its academic character: “rectification of righteousness, illustration of virtue and indifference to honor and reward.”
Fudan combines liberal education with cultivation of eminent talents through a proactive exploration of a new system that boasts of disciplinary intersection and integration and coordinates innovation and cultivation in scientific research.
Fudan is committed to the idea of cultivating talents with both moral integrity and outstanding capability and therefore serves its students with great care and emphasis on teaching. The University strives for a world-class undergraduate education and a postgraduate educational system with international influence, both of which inject continual vitality into the hundred-year-old institution.
Fudan aims to do first-rate education, makes first-rate academic achievements, and makes first-rate contributions to society. The University seeks to further improve its general management and endeavors to be one of the top universities in the world as soon as possible.