Gilchrist stumps audience as MU collaborates with University of Wollongong3 min read
Manipal: Manipal University (MU) opened a new chapter in its growing list of international collaborations as Vice Chancellor, Dr. Vinod Bhat put pen to paper on a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with delegates from the University of Wollongong (UOW), at a press conference in Marena here on Friday.
It was followed by an interaction between students and former Australian cricketer Adam Gilchrist, who is the brand ambassador for UOW and the education ambassador for Australia in India.
Speaking during the press conference at Marena, Prof. Wellings of the University of Wollongong said that the tie up would facilitate student and faculty exchange between the universities with a focus on research projects. Prof. Wellings also added that over 2500 Indian students come over to UOW’s campuses in Dubai and Wollongong every year and the MoU has been signed with MU in the light of the common goals and values such as global status, multi campuses and alignment in educational and research processes shared by the universities.
Stating that the present government of Australia has allocated a funding model that allows Australian students to go to a whole range of countries including India, he said, “Our challenege at UOW is to craft, as a part of the activities and bring this relationship in our framework to get students to go down for courses like engineering or health sciences. I could see if some of our medical correspondents could do a rotation specialisation course here for 6-8 weeks that would strengthen the breath of the medical professionals in Australia”, in response to a question on strategies that would be adopted to facilitate the student exchange.
MU and UOW are not new to each other. They have neighbouring campuses in Dubai and have worked together for 15 years now. “The students of MIT and KMC, Manipal could have opportunities for electives or semester abroad programs to Wollongong now, as a result of this MoU. This will lead on the faculty exchange and joint research programmes”, said Dr Vinod Bhat. He also added that the current MoU is a generic and covers a broad range of topics and listed that soon more fields like the School of Management, School of Communication could be added to the collaboration between the two universities.
Uncharacteristically, Gilchrist did not open the press conference, but he emphasised on the balance between education and a healthy lifestyle and stated that Manipal promotes the idea through its facilities. Citing his own career as an example for the same he also added the UOW Bradman Scholarship Program would allow incoming Indian students to pursue their education and their ‘cricketing desires’ at the same time through its funding and support.
‘Gilly’ then took part in 30 minute interaction session with the students where the focus was clearly on his cricketing career. He received a warm response from the students who didn’t hesitate to carry placards, photographs and cricket balls hoping for an autograph from the record-breaking wicketkeeper. “This isn’t a press conference, is it?”, remarked Gilly at one point, as he faced a barrage of questions from an inquisitive audience .
Dr. Bhat had more good news as he revealed that Manipal University, which has international tie-ups with over 300 universities in the world, was awarded the best of Indian Universities in internationalisation on Thursday at the FICCI educational conference in New Delhi.
The Manipal Journal was reporting live from the Press Conference. Gilly in Manipal
Edited by Prajwal Bhat