Harbin Engineering University lies on the bank of Songhua River in the 'Ice City', Harbin, north of China. The school, Military Engineering Institute of Chinese People's Liberation Army, was established in 1953. The chief general, Chen Geng was appointed as first-session president and concurrently political commissar of the Military Engineering Institute of PLA.
In 1970, the school was renamed as Harbin Shipbuilding Engineering Institute in original address of Harbin Military Engineering Institute, with its primary purpose focusing on the marine engineering department. In 1994, it was renamed as Harbin Engineering University.
Today, the school is subordinated to the Chinese Commission of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense. It is one of China's key developing national university, relying mainly on industry, coordinated with industry, science, management, arts and laws included as its many disciplines. It is one of national universities, which passed the preliminary examination of '211 Projects' in the first batch and was equipped with a postgraduate institute and the garden of science and technology at a national-university level.
Harbin Engineering University covers an area of about 1,250,000 square meters; the construction area is about 850,000 square meters. The school now has about 2400 teaching and administrative staff. Among them, there are 4 academicians of Chinese Engineering Academy and Chinese Science Academy, 200 doctoral advisors and 800 professors and associate professors. There are around 21,000 students who are registered to have full-time courses and of them, there are 6000 graduates. Nowadays Harbin Engineering University has been developed to the largest base of talent training and scientific research in the fields of national shipping industry, navy equipment, ocean exploration and nuclear application. The school has established extensive exchanges and co-operations with more than 180 influential universities and scientific research institutions in over 30 countries such as America, Japan, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and Russia.
In the new ear, the school insists on the characteristic idea of managing the university, and develops it in a characteristic way whilst establishing the strategies "rely on the shipping, base on national defense and develop as the main field of constructing national economy". It, emphasizes on serving the national defense industry and local development, makes great strides towards the goal to be an international characteristic and well-known university which retains and hopes for progress at a high level.
Harbin Engineering University has and continues to sincerely employ staff both in and outside China.