Michigan Tech Partners with College in India

By Mark Wilcox | Published

From left, Gopal Jayaraman, Mary Raber and Lorelle Meadows from Michigan Tech, pose with O.M.S.P.C. Marimuthu of Kamaraj College of Engineering and Technology at the signing of a MOU between the two schools.
From left, Gopal Jayaraman, Mary Raber and Lorelle Meadows from Michigan Tech, pose with O.M.S.P.C. Marimuthu of Kamaraj College of Engineering and Technology at the signing of a MOU between the two schools.

For the second time in less than three years, Michigan Technological University's Pavlis Institute for Global Technological Leadership has entered into a partnership with a college in India. In June, Lorelle Meadows, dean of Michigan Tech’s Pavlis Honors College and Mary Raber, assistant dean of academic programs in the College, traveled to Virudhunagar, in South Indian state of Tamil Nadu, to finalize the partnership with the Kamaraj College of Engineering and Technology.

“We were very honorably received and hosted,” says Meadows.

The Michigan Tech party signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Indian engineering school. Meadows credits Tech Professor Gopal Jayaraman of the Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics for playing a key role in establishing a connection between the two schools. Jayaraman was on hand for the signing in June.

International Educational Opportunities

The agreement with Kamaraj College is designed to promote educational excellence, academic ties and international cooperation. The agreement begins an exploration of mutually beneficial collaborative research and educational projects, cross-cultural exchanges and cooperative development of courses and programs. “The mission of Kamaraj College, with a strong focus on community development and access to higher education, aligns directly with the goals of the Pavlis Institute, the Honors College and Michigan Tech,” Meadows explains.

The agreement is the second in recent years with an Indian University for the Pavlis Institute. In June of 2012, the Pavlis Institute entered into a similar agreement with Karpaga Vinyaga College of Engineering and Technology (KVCET) near Chennai. The agreement began an exchange program that has been sustained over the past five years. Each summer, students from Michigan Tech spend five weeks in India working on sustainable community development projects, and students from KVCET visit Michigan Tech to engage with faculty and students on senior design projects.

Cultural Exchange

Meadows says the two MOU’s are very similar and provide a mechanism for a strong and sustained cultural exchange between the colleges.

"The Pavlis Honors College is very pleased to have entered into this new agreement and explore new partnerships in Tamil Nadu," she adds. Four students from the Pavlis Institute just returned from a two-week visit to Tamil Nadu to begin to explore opportunities with faculty and students at Kamaraj College and to reach into the local community to identify potential projects."

Reflecting on the recent trip, Meadows says “The visit was a great success, and we have significant potential for a very meaningful and lasting relationship with Kamaraj. They have strong interest in the Enterprise program as an educational model for their students, as well as a very strong culture of service, entrepreneurship and continuous improvement.”

Michigan Technological University is a public research university, home to more than 7,000 students from 54 countries. Founded in 1885, the University offers more than 120 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in science and technology, engineering, forestry, business and economics, health professions, humanities, mathematics, and social sciences. Our campus in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula overlooks the Keweenaw Waterway and is just a few miles from Lake Superior.