Sister Institutions Make Plans to Collaborate on Research
Feb. 10, 2012
More than 500 miles separate UT Dallas and UT Pan American, but the two schools hope to effectively narrow that distance after research faculty from both met to discuss working together on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) projects.
Nineteen faculty members from UT Pan Am visited the UT Dallas campus.
The STEM Faculty Research Symposium gathered faculty from the sister institutions in hopes of establishing a program that promotes long-term collaboration in their fields.
Disciplines represented at the symposium included biology, electrical engineering, physics, geosciences, chemistry, material science, mathematics and mechanical engineering.
Dr. Magaly Spector
Executive Vice President and Provost Hobson Wildenthal joined 29 UT Dallas faculty members in welcoming the group of 19 visitors from the UTPA campus in Edinburg.
“I am gratified for the response from both universities to this initiative,” said Wildenthal, who credited Dr. Magaly Spector, vice president of diversity and community engagement at UT Dallas, with creating the program.
“We’re trying to ignore geographic boundaries and create a pipeline between these two schools so faculty can work together on research, have conversations about partnerships or write joint publications,” said Spector.
“The symposium will help to gain grants from organizations like the National Science Foundation and National Institute of Health, to advance the research, and increase the numbers of doctorates among underrepresented minorities and women in STEM. This is the beginning of a program that will have very promising results.”
Spector also noted that since UTPA doesn’t offer many PhDs in science, engineering, mathematics or computer science, the partnership will encourage more graduate students to apply to programs, and to participate in undergraduate research programs at UT Dallas.
The guests toured the campus and labs. UT Dallas and UTPA faculty members explained their interests and research and discussed joint venture possibilities.
“You can help us find the best and the brightest of the students for our graduate programs and see what common interests we have,” said Dr. Mark Spong, dean of the Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science, as he addressed the visitors.
“We can see what projects we can start from the bottom up. This kind of synergy is long overdue.”
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