Penn State alumnus Qifeng Liu named Schwarzman Scholar

January 11, 2024

By Sean Yoder

Editor's note: This article originally appeared on Penn State News. 

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State alumnus Qifeng Liu has been named a Schwarzman Scholar, which provides one year of study at Tsinghua University in Beijing. 

Liu, of Wuhan, China, was a Schreyer Scholar who graduated from Penn State in 2019 with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and minors in economics and engineering leadership development. He went on to earn a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and University of Stuttgart. Since earning his master’s degree, Liu has been working for Ford in the technical rotation program where he focuses on powertrain controls and calibration. 

“This is an incredible opportunity to interact with international talents in different industries and sectors,” Liu said. “Building upon the Schwarzman program, I will strive to build bridges between China and the world through cultural and technological exchanges.” 

Liu said his future goals are to be a leader in the transportation and technology industry, and potentially pursue a higher degree in the cross section of machine learning and automotive controls. 

While at Penn State, Liu was involved with Penn State Global and was part of the founding committee for the Global Student Leadership Forum. He also served in leadership positions in the Chinese Students and Scholars Association and was an orientation leader for Penn State’s international New Student Orientation. 

About Schwarzman Scholars 

Established in 2013, the Schwarzman Scholars program provides funding for about 140 scholars annually from the U.S., China and around the world to attend Tsinghua University in Beijing for a one-year master’s program in global affairs.  

The core curriculum has students analyze leadership characteristics from multiple fields, receive Chinese language instruction, expose them to future challenges in global affairs, and learn about China’s political, economic and social reforms, according to the program’s website. The 2024 class of 150 scholars was narrowed from more than 4,000 applicants from 43 countries and 114 universities, a near record-high number of applicants for Schwarzman Scholars. The program is named for founding trustee Stephen A. Schwarzman, chairman and CEO of Blackstone Group. 

“The caliber of this incoming class and their potential fills me with optimism for the future,” said Schwarzman in a news release. “This year’s selected scholars are keenly interested in learning about China, which is now more important than ever in this complex geopolitical environment. They are ready to engage thoughtfully with global issues and eager to make a positive impact on the world.” 

Members of the 2024 class will begin their studies in Beijing in August. 

Students interested in applying to be Schwarzman Scholars can receive help on their application materials from Undergraduate Research and Fellowships Mentoring.


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