The need for medical education paved the way for Tzu Chi to make education another of its main missions. The Junior College of Nursing opened in Hualien in 1989 and would become the Tzu Chi University of Science and Technology, with a college of medicine established by 1994. By 2000, the institution offered complete education for students, from toddlers to doctoral candidates. Yet, while Buddhism is on the curriculum, Tzu Chi never requires the conversion of volunteers of students. As one nursing student said in an interview, “Neither the master nor her followers ever told us we should become devoted to Buddhism. And the strange thing is, since there is no one to push us, most of us are studying the books on Buddhism willingly.”
Tzu Chi strives to nurture the youth with aspirations, sound character, and healthy minds and bodies, through the teaching of moral values and living skills, and providing a holistic education.