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Late professor honored for devotion to work

Publish Time: 2017-12-15 Author: From: Shanghai Daily

 

A picture of Professor Zhong Yang visiting Shanghai's first forest of mangrove trees. (Ti Gong)

A Fudan University academic who was dedicated to education, biology research and aiding Tibet development was posthumously honored yesterday as an "Excellent Party Member" by the Shanghai Committee of the Communist Party of China.

Zhong Yang, who was a professor of life sciences at Fudan University and dean of the university's graduate school, was known for his contributions to the fields of botany, ecology, bioinformatics and evolutionary biology in his career of three decades.

Zhong was also well known for spending 16 years to assist Tibet's development. He collected about 40 million plant seeds to build a genetic bank of plants that grow exclusively in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, and helped to develop education of ecology in Tibet.

On September 25, Zhong died in a car accident during a business trip in Erdos City, Inner Mongolia. He was 53.

Yesterday, his colleagues and students shared their memories of him with the media.

In 1979, Zhong, who was then 15, joined a class for gifted students at the University of Science and Technology of China, and he studied radio electronics.

After graduating in 1984, Zhong was assigned to the Chinese Academy of Sciences' Institute of Botany in Wuhan, the capital of Hubei Province, as the institute was building a computer laboratory.

Zhao Bin, Zhong's close friend who was assistant to the dean of Fudan University's school of life sciences, was confused by Zhong's decision to move to Wuhan.

"But he was confident in the job," Zhao recalled. "He said he had spent only three years to learn about radio electronics at the university, but he had more time to learn botany in his life."

Zhong became so interested in botany that it became his life's career. His approaches to research differed to those of other botanists because of his academic background, Zhao said.

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