U. T. Dallas, Indian Institute of Technology - Roorkee
To Agree to Exchange Students, Faculty, Research

Pact to Promote Cooperation Between Technological Powerhouses

RICHARDSON, Texas (May 11, 2005) – The University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) and the Indian Institute of Technology - Roorkee (IITR) – powerhouses of high-technology higher education in their respective countries – are expected to sign an agreement later this month that would facilitate an exchange of students, faculty and research information between the two institutions.

The agreement is scheduled to be signed by the heads of the two universities – UTD President Dr. Franklyn Jenifer and IITR Director Dr. Prem Vrat – during a visit by Vrat to the UTD campus in late May.

Photo, Da Hsuan Feng
Dr. Da Hsuan Feng,
vice president for research
and graduate education

“Both UTD and IITR are very enthusiastic about the cooperative efforts envisioned under this affiliation agreement,” said Dr. Da Hsuan Feng, vice president for research and graduate education at U. T. Dallas. “There are tremendous synergies between the two institutions, starting with the very strong engineering and computer science programs at both schools. In addition, IITR has an up-and-coming program in management, which has long been a strength at UTD.”

The objective of the agreement is to promote cooperation between the two institutions, including the reciprocal exchange of students and faculty, collaborative research projects, exchange of publications and academic information and other mutually agreed-upon activities. The student exchange aspect of the agreement is expected to be implemented almost immediately, with UTD planning to host four third-year students from IITR as research interns this summer. UTD students will be able to study and work at IITR in the near future.

“As one of seven IITs – a group I refer to as the “Magnificent Seven” – the institute at Roorkee is among the most prestigious research universities in India,” Feng said. “This new relationship with IITR is another step in UTD’s efforts to develop collaborations with high-quality universities throughout the world in order to raise our visibility and to improve the quality of our academic and research endeavors.”

The two universities began a relationship last year when the directors of four IITs, including Roorkee, visited UTD. Last December, UTD returned the favor when a delegation from the university, led by Nobel laureate and UTD faculty member Dr. Alan MacDiarmid, made a 10-day trip to India which included a stop at IITR.

“Collaboration agreements among universities, of course, are concluded all the time,” said Feng, who was a member of the UTD delegation to India. “However, we believe this particular agreement holds a great deal of promise because of the many areas of commonality at the two institutions, as well as the strong desire by both to advance among the ranks of globally recognized research universities.”

Feng added that several dozen members of the UTD faculty are alumni of IITs, although none graduated from IITR.

Nearly 160 years old, the institute at Roorkee was declared an IIT by the government of India in 2001. The university is considered a trendsetter in the areas of education and research in the fields of science, technology and engineering. It offers bachelor’s degrees in 10 disciplines of engineering and architecture and postgraduate degrees in 55 disciplines of engineering, applied science, architecture and planning.

Roorkee is located in northern India, approximately 175 kilometers from New Delhi.

About UTD

The University of Texas at Dallas, located at the convergence of Richardson, Plano and Dallas in the heart of the complex of major multinational technology corporations known as the Telecom Corridor®, enrolls more than 14,000 students. The school’s freshman class traditionally stands at the forefront of Texas state universities in terms of average SAT scores. The university offers a broad assortment of bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs. For additional information about UTD, please visit the university’s web site at www.utdallas.edu.