Today @ Colorado State has been replaced by SOURCE. This site exists as an archive of Today @ Colorado State stories between January 1, 2009 and September 8, 2014.

Research / Discovery

The Muse: Indian Summer

8/19/2014
By Alan Rudolph, Vice President for Research

As we head into the new academic year there is much to Muse from this summer's activities.

One piece of personal good news is that I am slowly shedding the 10 pounds gained in my freshman year at CSU and found a commuting cycling route that includes a shower. 

One focus of this summer has been to diversify our partnerships in the international arena.  A small group traveled to India in early August, just at the end of their monsoon season, to sign a memorandum of understanding with Amity University and to rekindle a relationship with national research professor C.N.R. Rao at the Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research.

Amity is one of the largest private universities in India and is a remarkable story.  It was founded as one of the first private business schools in India.  They have six campuses in India and six around the world (UK, Singapore, China, Africa and two in the U.S.) with 120,000 students, all constructed in just eight years! 

The campus we visited in Delhi is quite new, with approximately 24,000 students.  The academic programs and degrees align remarkably well with CSU given Amity’s strengths in natural resources, water, agriculture and engineering.  They are currently building a 400-bed hospital and medical school.  The agreement we signed was broad and intended to open academic and research partnerships with CSU.

Significant synergies

We found significant synergies between Amity and CSU in the land-grant ethos.  As an example, one of their more successful programs is in an area they have coined Rotonics.  This is a broad program in studying ribosome ecosystems and a particular fungal species, P. Indica, that has remarkable properties in stimulating growth and flowering in a number of agricultural products of interest. 

They are in the process of scaling this up to expand their field experience with a freeze-dried form of this interesting fungus and talking to corporate partners to bring this to industrial scale.  It was very impressive and we are exploring common interests and faculty here at CSU in potential collaborations.

While we were there we also explored academic programs and participated with an MBA class of 100 students to discuss globalization as a key aspect of a well-rounded educational experience.  We discussed with Amity leadership academic education programs abroad and the possibility of hosting Amity students (or visa versa) at CSU, as well as more traditional shared degree programs.  I anticipate a return visit to CSU this fall from a senior delegation at Amity.

Rekindled relationship

We rekindled our relationship with C.N.R. Rao who is a world leader in materials and a senior Indian scientist and thought leader; he was given an honorary degree from CSU in 2009. 

We toured his materials research institute of over 200 scientists and found very impressive facilities and equipment.  This is a particularly good time to establish a new relationship with his new institute, given we are about to launch a new advanced materials institute here at CSU. 

International research endeavors take a lot of time, energy and eventually resources to make them successful, but they are so important to the future solutions we seek for global problems.  CSU is well positioned with its core research programs and projects in energy, water, climate change and infectious disease to meet the challenge of expanding its global reach. 

I look forward to working with the faculty through the next academic year to see these endeavors become a reality.  We have identified some foundations that will support Indo-U.S. collaborations and will be applying to these organizations to facilitate our goals.