NMIMS Deemed-to-be University hosted a senior leadership delegation from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) at its Mumbai campus on 13th and 14th February 2023. The event aimed to bring together academic experts to discuss and promote collaborative applied research, curriculum development, internships and student placements.
NMIMS Mukesh Patel School of Technology Management & Engineering and Virginia Tech already enjoy fruitful collaboration for their various programs such as the coordinated NMIMS MPSTME 3 + 1 + 1 program and the NMIMS Sarla Anil Modi School of Economics Dual Degree, which is the first in India to offer such a program.
The Virginia Tech delegation included Dr. Cyril Clark, Executive Vice President and Professor, Dr. Daniel Sui, Senior Vice President of Research and Innovation, Dr. Guru Ghosh, Vice President of Outreach and International Affairs, Dr. Tarun Sen, Dr. Dr. and Professor Emeritus of Accounting and Information Systems, and Mr. Harold Bryman, Foreign Trade Officer, US Department of Commerce, Mumbai, among other senior academics and scholars.
Eminent members representing SVKM and NMIMS included Shri. Amit Sheth, Hon. Secretary, Managing Committee of SVKM, Shri. Shalin Diwatia, SVKM Committee Member, Dr. Ramesh Bhatt, Vice-Chancellor, NMIMS of SVKM, Dr. Sharad Mhaiskar, Pro-Chancellor, Dr. Meena Chintamaneni, Pro-Chancellor and several Heads of Departments, Deans, associate deans and professors of the NMIMS of SVKM were also present on this occasion.
The event started with Dr. Sharad Mhaiskar welcoming all the guests and then Dr. Guru Ghosh spoke about the NMIMS-Virginia Tech partnership. This was followed by Dr. Cyril Clarke who spoke about Hokies collaborating with diverse team members and crossing traditional lines between fields and disciplines to tackle global issues, and Ms. Meena Saxena, International Director, NMIMS , was introduced by Mr. Harold Bryman, who spoke about the importance of collaboration between industry and academia, emphasizing its benefits for both parties. Two students of the B Tech 3+1+1 & Certificate program shared their experiences of the unique program.
The highlight of the two-day engaging sessions was the university’s vision for research. It featured presentations on research conducted by both institutions. Dr. Sharad Mhaiskar and Dr. Daniel Sui highlighted the university’s emphasis on research and their achievements in terms of research areas, which include schools, citations, the number and quality of papers presented over the years, patents awarded and funding received. They presented their shared research goals, objectives, and priorities while exploring new frontiers for research. Dr. Mhaiskar also spoke about the stellar work done by Atal Incubation Center encouraging research and startup temperament.
This was followed by a meeting of Virginia Tech delegates with Dr. Ramesh Bhatt for further discussions on research collaboration. Dr. Viswanath Venkatesh, Verizon Eminent Scholar and Business Information Chair at Virginia Tech also led a discussion on faculty development and research with NMIMS Business School Dean Dr. Prashant Mishra in the presence of Dr. Ramesh Bhatt and other senior faculty members from NMIMS, including Mukesh Patel School of Technology Management and Engineering Dean Dr. Alka Mahajan.
The meeting chaired by Dr. Azim Eskandarian, Professor and Head of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the Virginia Tech College of Engineering, discussed the details of the proposed VT NMIMS 3+1+1.5, an integrated master’s program in mechanical engineering while, Dr. Sharad Mhaiskar led a discussion on the NMIMS-Virginia Tech Certificate program. The Data Science – Virginia Tech Certificate Program was also held, led by Dr. Amy Suprenant, Dean of Graduate Studies at Virginia Tech.
The guests from the US also got a glimpse of India’s rich culture and hospitality with a mesmerizing performance by Dr. Tina Tambe and her troupe, while enjoying Indian delicacies at the gala dinner hosted for them.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Harold Bryman, Foreign Trade Officer, US Department of Commerce, Mumbai said, “By working together, we can create a more skilled and competent workforce that can meet future challenges. Collaboration between industry and academia is key to bridging the gap between theoretical knowledge and practical skills needed in industry.
Dr. Ramesh Bhatt commented, “The partnership between NMIMS and Virginia Tech reiterates our commitment to fostering an ecosystem that promotes knowledge sharing, research and innovation. Through this invaluable association, our students will not only benefit from the latest knowledge, techniques and skills, but will also be exposed to a diverse range of perspectives and ideas. We are delighted to have hosted the esteemed delegation from Virginia Tech and look forward to strengthening our association with them in the years to come.”
Dr. Cyril Clark, Executive Vice President and Provost, Virginia Tech, commented, “It is a pleasure and a privilege to be in India again. This is my third visit to India, but I feel like I’ve been learning about India for the last 40 years, because of the connections and collaborations I’ve had in mentoring Indian students as well as working with Indian colleagues. Virginia Tech is one of 50 land-grant universities. Land-grant institutions were established in the United States to advance mechanical and agricultural armaments and also to provide a liberal and practical education. Grant universities are characterized not only by their history, but also by what is called a tripartite mission. This includes three basic missions: to educate the population, to conduct impactful research and discovery, and then to take the outcomes of their education and research and transfer them to the betterment of society.”
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