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Vol 40  No 1
August 9, 2007


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Memorial and British university strengthen partnership
by Jeff Green

Memorial has re-affirmed its commitment to continue developing collaborations with a U.K. university.

On July 25, President Dr. Axel Meisen and Dr. Paul Curran, vice-chancellor of Bournemouth University, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to expand an existing partnership. The signing ceremony was held on the St. John’s campus.

Bournemouth is located on the south coast of England in the county of Dorset with one of its two main campuses located in Poole – an area with strong connections to this province.

The purpose of the MOU is to establish the general areas and activities in which Bournemouth and Memorial will seek to collaborate, recognizing the historic 400-year-old connection between this province and that region of England. Poole tradesmen, shipowners and seamen were heavily involved in the cod trade, and merchants from the area also settled in areas throughout Newfoundland and Labrador.

With more than 15,000 students, Bournemouth is similar in size to Memorial and has a fine reputation for its research and programs. In addition to a business school, the university also has a media centre, law school, and school of design, engineering and computing.

According to the MOU, the two universities will look at ways to collaborate on areas such as research work, including joint applications for research funding, staff exchanges and secondments. They will also examine ways of collaborating in the scholarly activities related to the 400th anniversary of the founding of the settlement at Cooper’s Cove (Cupids) by John Guy.

The MOU is for three years.

Bournemouth has had an official connection with Memorial since 1997. Its students have come to Memorial for work terms on several occasions, working primarily in the areas of engineering and archaeology.

Last year, marketing staffer Jane Gwizdala met with officials from Memorial’s Division of Marketing and Communications, Distance Education and Learning Technologies (DELT), as well as the Office of Student Recruitment to learn how Memorial markets itself. Another marketing staff member from Bournemouth, David Foot, is scheduled to visit Memorial in September.

Officials from both universities are also examining a potential connection between Bournemouth and Memorial’s campus in Harlow, England. Dr. Rosemary Pope, a pro-vice chancellor at Bournemouth, was recently appointed to the board of directors of MUN (U.K.), the legal entity with oversight responsibility for Memorial University’s Harlow Campus.

On July 24, Dr. Curran toured both the St. John’s campus and the Marine Institute. Later that evening he was the guest speaker at the Wessex Society’s public meeting at Hampton Hall in the Marine Institute. He spoke about the historical links between Dorset and Newfoundland, as well as current developments in Dorset and at Bournemouth University.

During his visit to this province, Dr. Curran was scheduled to attend the Wine and Rose fundraiser at the Botanical Garden on July 26.

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