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Australian university, PAU collaboration on cards

The Tribune 2017-10-12 01:24:00
Areas identified for joint efforts include food technology, natural resource management and logistics
Dignitaries from the University of Canberra, Australia, along with PAU officials in Ludhiana. Tribune photo

“It’s a proud and happy homecoming,” remarked Professor Deep Saini, Vice-Chancellor and president of the University of Canberra, Australia, and an ex-student of Punjab Agricultural University. It is Dr Saini’s first visit to the university after he completed his postgraduation in 1977. Accompanying the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Canberra were the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), Professor Nick Klomp, and Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Students and Partnerships), Rongyu Li. The scientists held deliberations with senior PAU officers to explore collaborative opportunities in the areas of research and education with special focus on environment conservation. Divulging in details about the University of Canberra, Dr Saini said the institution was focused on experiential learning, making it one of the top two per cent universities in the world. The areas of interest for collaboration with the PAU, he said, were food technology, natural resource management, supply chain management and logistics. Professor Nick Klomp, with a background in environmental science, laid emphasis on the conservation of natural resources as a major area to work with the PAU, while also laying thrust on promoting experiential learning and a revamped teaching methodology for the university. Rongyu Li applauded the PAU’s contribution towards bringing agricultural prosperity in the state. “It brings back the memories of my agricultural background in China and the fact that the farming communities all over the world shares qualities of hard work and resilience,” remarked Li. The PAU Vice-Chancellor, Dr Baldev Singh Dhillon, welcomed the dignitaries and underlined the areas of research, faculty and student exchange as broad areas for collaboration. He laid stress on water, soil health, pesticides and crop residue as the major problem areas and exploring common ground for natural resource management and climate change. Dr Neelam Grewal, Dean, Post Graduate Studies, PAU, shed light on the experiential training units of the university and explored the option of having co-major advisors for students from the University of Canberra as well as lectures by experts through video conferencing. Deans, directors and heads of various departments also brain stormed various areas for mutual collaboration. Earlier, Dr Navtej Singh Bains, Director (Research), PAU, briefed about the activities of the university, while Dr GS Sangha, Dean, College of Basic Sciences and Humanities, coordinated the programme. The dignitaries later visited the College of Basic Sciences and Humanities and interacted with the heads of various departments and faculty of the Department of Botany. They also paid a visit to the Food Industry Centre, School of Biotechnology and the Museum of Rural History.

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