Sias International School of Zhengzhou New District, Zhengzhou (Sias IS) began as the dream of Dr. Shawn Chen, of an English-language school where the students gain a strong academic background in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) and who draw their inspiration and creativity for innovation from a study of the arts. He envisioned a campus with plenty of space for students to learn outside the classroom and with olympic class sports fields, swimming pool and gymnasium for the students to maintain healthy minds and bodies through physical pursuits, athletics and competitive sports.
As the co-founder of Plug & Play, the world-wide hi-tech incubator and disruptor, Dr. Chen sees a future for robots in education, but he seeks a model of technology education that focusses on ensuring that the human mind and capabilities always exceeds the robots that we create.
Dr. Chen is well established in education. In late 1990s he was inspired to build a university that blended the best aspects of Eastern and Western education. With the approval of the Degree Committee of the State Council in China and accreditation by China Ministry of Education, Sias International University opened in 1998. It is the first solely American-owned university in Central China. Affiliated with Fort Hays State University of Kansas, USA, and formerly with Zhengzhou University, it is also the first full-time undergraduate university granting both Chinese and American Bachelor's Degrees. Sias University is fully accredited by China's Ministry of Education and on January 16, 2019, an Unveiling Ceremony was held to formally announce Sias University's new name and status as an independent private university. (It was previously named "Sias International University".)
The "East-meets-West" approach of Sias University also underlies Dr. Chen's drive and inspiration for Sias IS. Combining Chinese and Western educational philosophies, Sias IS aims to provide its students with the education and inspiration to be well-balanced with a strong mind, body and spirit, prepared for further studies in universities around the world and innovative leadership in an ever-advancing, interconnected and technological world.