Tsinghua University in Beijing is one of China’s best known and most distinguished educational institutions; it is also the nation’s top engineering school. That status is largely due to the work and philosophy of Yi Chi Mei, who served as president of the university during one of its most challenging periods. Mei was born in 1889 in Tian Jing, China. In 1909 he passed the first Boxer Indemnity Scholarship Examination and was sent to WPI to study electrical engineering. After earning his bachelor’s degree, he returned to China to teach mathematics, English and physics at National Tsinghua University. He was named president of Tsinghua in 1931. Over the next several years, he established the university’s engineering school and saw the university’s enrollment nearly double. The disruptions of World War II required the university to relocate several times. After the war, Mei left China and settled for a time in New York City.