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2007 Distinguished Alumnus: Jun Zhu

Jun Zhu (PhD ’89 Statistics) was selected as the College’s 2007 Distinguished Alumnus.

“Jun Zhu is a distinguished leader of higher education in his country, and we are proud to call him an alumnus of our College,” said Dan Solomon, dean of PAMS.

Zhu received his master’s degree in genetics and plant breeding in 1982 from Zhejiang Agricultural University in Hangzhou in the Zheijiang province of China. He came to the U.S. in 1986 and earned his PhD in statistics and genetics from NC State in 1989.

After completing postdoctoral work in statistics at NC State, Zhu returned to China in 1990 as an associate professor in the Agronomy Department at Zhejiang Agricultural University.He quickly became a full professor and was named vice president in 1994, In 1999, four universities merged in the new consolidated Zhejiang University, with Zhu being named dean of the College of Agriculture and Biotechnology. Zhu served as dean until 2005, and was also named director of the Institute of Bioinformatics in 2001. In 2005, he was named vice president of Zhejiang University.

Tracing its roots back to 1897, the parent institution of Zhejiang University was heralded as the “East Cambridge” through its history. In its current form, Zhejiang consistently ranks among the top universities in China for its comprehensive strength in teaching, research and service.

The institution is similar to NC State in many ways. It has developed strong relationships with industry, is successful in obtaining research funding and has similar priorities in extension and engagement. Because of the tremendous number of things we have in common, Zhejiang University is NC State’s only sister university in China. As vice president, Zhu enthusiastically leads the effort to establish collaborative initiatives with NC State.

Jun Zhu’s broad research interests include statistical and genetic models for quantitative genetics and bioinformatics.He is extensively published and has developed software for quantitative genetics and bioinformatics.

He is a member of the Biometric Society, the Genetics Society of China, the New York Academy of Science, the Crop Science Society of America, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the international honor society, Phi Kappa Phi.