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Memorial explores collaboration with Russian university

A delegation from NArFU visited Memorial University recently.

 

By Geoff Ash

A delegation from the Northern Arctic Federal University (NArFU) visited Memorial to explore opportunities for collaboration and partnership recently.
The group is touring a number of institutions in Canada, but had a special interest in Memorial. Dr. Grant Gardner, associate vice-president (academic), helped to arrange the visit with co-ordination provided by the International Centre.

"There is a great deal of potential for overlap between Memorial's and NArFU's research interests, specifically in the areas of oil and gas development in harsh climates," said Dr. Gardner. "Any collaboration would give both sides access to new environments and data that could have significant impacts in the technical and engineering aspects -- and in the environmental, social, and economical issues as well."

During their two-day whirlwind visit, the group presented to Memorial faculty, met with President Kachanoski, and toured and met with representatives from the Centre for Cold Ocean Resource Engineering (C-Core), the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, the Marine Institute and the Faculty of Business.

Sonja Knutson, director of the International Centre, accompanied the group and was pleased with the outcome and overall success of the visit.

"Strong connections were made through both C-CORE and the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, and the meeting with the dean of the Faculty of Business Administration was quite productive," she said. "Stuart Durrant, who is the Honorary Russian Consul here, was a great asset. There were lots of common interests; I expect it will be no problem to get followup activity."

Dr. Wilfred Zerbe, dean, Faculty of Business Administration, agreed. The delegation and representatives of the business school discussed possibilities for exchange and joint degree programs between Memorial and NArFu, something which Dr. Zerbe believes would have a significant impact for Memorial.

"Over the past five years the Faculty of Business Administration has contributed more than 50 per cent of the university-wide increase in international undergraduate enrolment through our development of collaborations with business schools worldwide," he said. "These partnerships allow cohorts of students to come to Memorial to complete their degrees, thereby enhancing the diversity of our student body and exposing all business students to global perspectives on management. We are looking forward to developing a future partnership with the Northern Arctic Federal University that will build on the Faculty of Business Administration's other partnerships in Eastern Europe and also creating new student and faculty exchange opportunities."

To inquire about potential collaborations, please contact Sonja Knutson at sknutson@mun.ca. The NArFU presentations can be found at www.mun.ca/international/projects/NArFU.php.

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