Chinese President Xi Jinping Tuesday extended congratulations and greetings to faculty, students and alumni of Renmin University of China (RUC) as the university marks its 80th anniversary.
Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, made the remarks in a congratulatory letter conveyed at an event celebrating the anniversary in Beijing.
"The Party and the country are at a crucial stage at present," Xi said.
"Never before have we had such a pressing need for higher education, and never before have we so required scientific knowledge and talent," Xi said.
The president encouraged the RUC to use its 80th anniversary as a new starting point in becoming a world-class university with world-class disciplines.
As the first accredited university set up by the CPC, the RUC has always adhered to the leadership of the Party, the guiding status of Marxism, and the mission to serve the Party and the people, Xi said.
Xi spoke highly of the university's achievements in humanities and social sciences and appreciated its efforts to train talent for the country's revolution, construction and reform.
He asked the university to carry on these fine traditions and make new contributions to the development of higher education, China's two centenary goals and achieving the Chinese dream of national rejuvenation.
Vice Premier Liu Yandong read Xi's congratulatory letter at Tuesday's celebration, and asked the university to deepen reform, improve its education quality, and train more talent for the country's development and national rejuvenation.
As one of China's premiere institutions of higher learning, the RUC is a research-oriented comprehensive university focusing on humanities and social sciences.
The university can be traced back to Shaanbei Public School, founded in 1937 in a CPC revolutionary base in Shaanxi, northwest China. It later became the North China United University, and then North China University. On Oct. 3, 1950, it was restructured and renamed RUC.