The naming is recognition of the largest gift in University history
Cal State LA President William A. Covino announced the naming of the Rongxiang Xu College of Health and Human Services on Saturday afternoon during the University's final Commencement ceremony.
The event marked the first named college at Cal State LA and recognizes the largest gift in the University's history. The National Rongxiang Xu Foundation made the gift to commemorate the contributions of Dr. Rongxiang Xu. Dr. Xu was a surgeon and expert in regenerative medicine. He passed away in 2015.
The ceremony was attended by officials including Congressman Xavier Becerra, California Treasurer John Chiang, Congresswoman Judy Chu and Chinese Counsel General Liu Jian. During the ceremony, Covino awarded Presidential Medallions to Rongxiang Xu’s widow, Dr. Li Li, and his son, Kevin Xu.
"I present the Presidential Medallion to Dr. Li Li and Kevin Xu, in recognition of their outstanding leadership and extraordinary service to the students and faculty of Cal State LA," Covino said.
The Presidential Medallion is the highest honor awarded by Cal State LA. Since the medallion's inception in 1983, only 10 have been awarded.
Dr. Xu developed an innovative therapy for burns that helped restore the physiological structure and function of the skin and other tissues, dramatically reducing pain, illness and death.
He witnessed the pain and scarring of burn patients treated with conventional therapy and was determined to devise a more effective, less painful approach. Through years of studies, Dr. Xu and his research team developed important new principles for regenerating adult tissue and organs. These medical advances saved lives, revolutionized wound therapy and dramatically improved the quality of life for countless patients around the world.
During the past three decades, Dr. Xu’s research in tissue repair and regeneration led to multiple U.S. patents and the growth of his successful multi-national company, MEBO International. His scientific achievements have been acknowledged by three U.S. presidents: Barack Obama, Bill Clinton and George H. W. Bush. The Chinese government honored Dr. Xu for his numerous contributions with a commemorative stamp with his image.
After the presentation of the Presidential Medallion, retired Superior Court Judge Michael Nash delivered the keynote address. He told students that their generation has an opportunity to make a difference with issues such as homelessness and children caught up in the foster care system.
“We don’t live in a vacuum. We need to care about those around us,” said Nash, who recently became the executive director of the newly created Los Angeles County Office of Child Protection. “We need to do better, and we can do better.”
Photo: President William A. Covino awards a Presidential Medallion to Rongxiang Xu’s widow, Dr. Li Li. (Credit: J. Emilio Flores/Cal State LA)
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