Jindal Global University, University Of Virginia Partner To Promote Student Exchange, Joint Research
The Jindal Global University (JGU) has signed a MoU with University of Virginia to provide a significant new platform for students and scholar exchange, joint research on topics of global importance such as democracy and environmental sustainability, and a general expansion of UVA’s engagement in India.
UVA Provost Ian Baucom and JGU Vice Chancellor Raj Kumar signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) committing to the partnership during Kumar’s visit to Charlottesville during the week of November 14 with five of JGU Deans and other senior staff. The document will serve as a foundation for more agreements between UVA and JGU schools and institutes to support student exchanges, joint research and symposia, and other collaborative activities.
The Founding Vice Chancellor of OP Jindal Global University, Dr. C. Raj Kumar said that the partnership will allow the students to develop a holistic understanding of the globalised world with cooperation in exchanging knowledge, perspectives, and cultural experiences.
“The partnership will provide transformative prospects of higher education and learning to students in both the universities and enable our faculty members to pursue joint teaching and collaborative research with a view to advancing the cause of international education and institution building,” he added.
The MOU paves the way for opportunities to promote student exchange programmes as well as faculty exchange programmes. It creates opportunities for dual degree programmes and pathways programmes in which students from both countries and both institutions are able to pursue degrees in each other’s universities.
Launched in 2009, JGU has swiftly developed into one of India’s consistently top-ranked institutions with 10,000 students, a highly internationalised faculty with a 1:9 ratio to students, and a substantial budget for further growth. Under the leadership of Kumar, a Rhodes Scholar and Harvard Law alumnus, the university has grown into 12 schools with faculties dedicated to law, business, liberal arts/humanities, media studies/communications, public policy, international relations, and public health/human development.
The Indian government’s new National Education Policy (NEP) promises to liberalise Indian education system removing the obstacles to international engagement, including a substantial easing of barriers to the work of international universities within India. JGU is one of 14 “institutions of eminence” that the Indian government has identified as particularly prestigious universities that enjoy special autonomy and privileges enabling them to play leading roles in shaping Indian higher education.
UVA’s Vice Provost for Global Affairs Ambassador Stephen D Mull said that the time is ripe for expanded US engagement with Indian higher education, which will be vital for universities like UVA that want to have a global impact.
“The country is the world’s biggest democracy with a population bigger than the US, Europe and Latin America combined,” he said adding that India has brilliant students, scholars and entrepreneurs who want to partner on some of the world’s biggest challenges. Since 2019, the number of new Indian graduate and professional students studying in the United States has skyrocketed by 430 per cent, clearly indicating vast potential for higher Indian enrolments here at UVA,” Mull said.
I came to work at the University of Virginia for many years serving as a US diplomat. I didn't need any convincing about the strategic importance of India and the importance of developing a very strong relationship with India because India, from our perspective, is only going to be playing a greater role in the world. An important part of this emerging strategic relationship has to be a very close relationship between our two academic communities, he added.