Organised by the China branch of ParisTech Alumni with extensive support from the ParisTech Asia Office, the two-hour event took place at the magnificent Villa Basset, the residence of the French Consul in Shanghai, which is celebrating its centenary this year. More than 100 guests attended, including alumni, representatives from partner universities, institutions and companies, and guests of honour Mr Laurent Bili, French Ambassador to China, and Mr Benoît Guidée, French Consul General in Shanghai.
The evening opened with speeches from Ambassador Bili, Mr Christian Lerminiaux (President of ParisTech), Mrs Laura Villette (Director of the ParisTech Office in Shanghai), members
of the China branch of ParisTech Alumni, and representatives from the evening’s sponsors, Aden and LincolnGroup. Ambassador Laurent Bili, who was technical advisor to the presidential diplomatic office of Jacques Chirac from 2002 to 2007, looked back on the long history of ParisTech in China, recalling that ParisTech had often been “taken along in the suitcases of French delegations visiting China”. Mr Lerminiaux too noted ParisTech’s long-established presence in China, while also pointing out that 2021 marks the beginning of a new chapter, with the expansion of ParisTech’s international recruitment campaign to 12 new countries or regions in Asia, and Arts et Métiers joining the programme.
Finally, Mr Philippe Obry from Aden and Mr Antoine Lamy from Lincoln underlined how important it is for French companies in China to be able to work with the alumni networks of top French institutions. Guests then had plenty of time to catch up with friends and former classmates over a cocktail reception, with wine kindly provided by the Baron Philippe de Rothschild and Gérard Bertrand wineries.
As well as marking the 30th anniversary of ParisTech, the event was also the perfect opportunity to introduce the China branch of ParisTech Alumni, which was set up at the end of 2020. No doubt there will be lots more events to look forward to in the future!