Binghamton signs MOU with Vishwakarma Institute of Technology in India
January 26, 2011Tweet
Binghamton University has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Vishwakarma Institute of Technology (VIT) located in Pune, India, to forge academic and cultural cooperation with a particular focus on serving undergraduate students. Krishnawami Srihari, dean of the Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science, signed the agreement on Jan. 19 during a visit to the Pune campus.
“Our global presence is very important to us and includes a commitment to be actively engaged in India,” said C. Peter Magrath, interim president at Binghamton University. “This partnership allows us to forge new links so that the relationship between Binghamton University and India will continue to grow and deepen.”
As part of the new MOU, Binghamton University and VIT will launch a 2 + 2 program in which students from India will spend two years at the Pune campus and their final two years in the Watson School. The program will be offered in three areas: electrical engineering; computer engineering, and industrial engineering, with students ultimately graduating with a bachelor’s degree from Binghamton University.
The new 2 + 2 program is expected to begin admitting students for fall 2011 at VIT, which means that students will begin their Binghamton University stint in fall 2013. A highly selective initiative, the program will initially have a class of 11 students but expectations are high that those numbers will grow quickly. Faculty at Binghamton University will interact regularly with faculty at VIT through visits and regular communication to shape the program’s curriculum. In addition, faculty at both institutions will be exploring joint research possibilities.
“We were looking for an opportunity that would be a great fit for Binghamton University and the Watson School and we have found it,” Srihari said. “We conducted a well-researched and systematic review of select schools in India and a relationship with VIT represents the very best. This opportunity partners us with a quality program that offers excellent preparation to outstanding students. The result is a great collaborative match that will ensure student success – both in Pune and in Binghamton.”
As an extension of the MOU, Binghamton University and VIT have also partnered with Anveshak Technology and Knowledge Solutions to launch a series of professional development courses. Classes will be crafted specifically for undergraduate engineering students and early career engineers in India. The main focus will be on providing quality education on the type of computational techniques and tools that is currently being used by mechanical, production, civil and industrial engineers. Held on the Pune campus, courses will be taught by both VIT faculty and Anveshak staff members. Binghamton University’s role in the partnership is to oversee and approve the course structure and material. Binghamton will also review exam papers and projects on a sampling basis and all course completion certificates will carry the University’s name and logo.
“The professional development program with Anveshak is also another opportunity for Binghamton University to demonstrate its commitment to be actively engaged with India,” Srihari said. “It allows us to forge new and exciting links with some of India’s up and coming engineers. It also allows Binghamton University to contribute to the field of engineering education and professional development in a meaningful way. Our partnership with Anveshak, which is headed up by former Binghamton University graduate, Sandeep Tonapi, not only represents our expanding global presence but also the caliber and entrepreneurial spirit of our alums.”