The University of Houston, USA, has opened its doors to students from the Indian Institute of Technology, Patna (IIT-P). This follows the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) — the first of its kind between any of the IITs and the US varsity — on research and teaching.
IIT-P Director Prof Anil Kumar Bhowmick said as part of the student exchange programme, 10 B-Techs from different departments, including research scholars, could now go to USA each year and do their projects.
“While working out this programme, we have also taken into account the money part for stay and food of students at the University of Houston,” said Prof Bhowmick, adding: “The MoU would provide opportunities not only to the B-Tech and PhD students but also the faculty members from the IIT-P to go to USA and develop their research skills and interact with people working in different areas.”
He further said it would also help in bringing teachers from USA to Patna so that knowledge of subjects as well as latest technology could be possible here. “In addition, this will also help in collaboration research,” he added.
Addressing a gathering Associate Dean of Research, University of Houston, Prof Ramanan Krishnamoorti, said: “We are coming to the cradle of knowledge where almost all scientific and engineering researches have taken place. You are an incredible research of knowledge and we will be more than happy to develop human resource with you. We just want to be treated as equals because we are here to learn and participate as much as you.”
He also urged the faculty members to treat the University of Houston as a ‘sister university’ and added: “The MoUs come and go, we have done the simpler part (of signing it) but its actual execution depends on students and faculty members of IIT-P. We are here to help and get help, if not physically then through the Internet.”
Asked how soon the student exchange programme would commence, Prof Krishnamoorti said: “It can be as early as the next summer, say around May, when 50-60 undergraduate researchers do scientific and engineering research in our university. That’s the time we can also host students from the IIT-Patna.”