Manipal: UNSW Sydney has underpinned its partnership with India’s leading Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE) with an agreement to boost academic and educational exchange and research collaborations between the two universities. The forecasted rise of India as Asia’s next superpower and the accompanying growth of the middle class over the next decade provides a once-in-a-generation opportunity for UNSW. Under the University’s India Growth Strategy, UNSW has made series of targeted and strategic investments in developing transformative partnerships in India. Pro-Vice Chancellor International at UNSW, Laurie Pearcey, and Dr H Vinod Bhat, Vice-Chancellor of MAHE, signed the first agreements on August 2, 2019 in Manipal to facilitate large-scale two-way mobility of students and announced a new seed funding scheme that will build capacity in India’s higher education system based on joint research. The two institutions have jointly committed AUD$5M of seed funding up to 2025 to deliver tangible outcomes and ensure the success of the partnership. Applications for the 2019 round of seed funding opens on August 12. In the first year, the seed funding will provide up to 10 awards valued at $20,000 each.
“The new partnership with Manipal is a significant milestone in our India story. It is a landmark partnership that is set to deliver world class degrees through articulation pathways and transnational education delivered in-country at scale,” said Pearcey. “The partnership provides wonderful opportunities for students who are seeking to gain a vital global perspective that will help shape their ideas and make them effective problem solvers for the future.” Central to the new agreement with MAHE are exchange programs for both students and academic staff members. The partnership strengthens articulation pathways and dual degrees for undergraduate and postgraduate coursework students through mutual recognition of credit in a range of areas and courses. Those include combined undergraduate and graduate degrees and short-term study abroad programs. Currently, UNSW Engineering and MAHE, through its International Centre for Applied Sciences (ICAS), offer an articulation program that allows eligible MAHE students to commence their studies at UNSW beginning in the first term of the third year of study in the Bachelor of Engineering/Bachelor of Science program.
Vice-Chancellor Dr. Bhat of MAHE expressed confidence that “the new partnership between the two institutions would transform lives through research and education, prepare students for the future and make a significant contribution to India-Australia relations.” Academic staff exchanges are also available in varying forms from reciprocal staff exchanges to visiting academic staff and visiting research fellows. In a reciprocal staff exchange, each university may nominate members of the academic staff to participate in an exchange for the purpose of study or lecturing at the other university on a reciprocal basis. A visiting academic staff arrangement involves inviting faculty members of the partner university to lecture or consult for a specified period of time. In addition, visiting research fellow positions are available in which each university may nominate one or more of its faculty to visit the partner university for the purpose of advanced study or research. “By working together and exchanging knowledge with international research partners, we can make significant inroads toward solving the world’s greatest challenges,” said Pearcey. “We believe the extension and strengthening of scientific exchange and cooperation is of mutual value to both of our institutions and will further nurture the bilateral relationship between our two countries.”