cuaengineer Exploring Global Educational Opportunities Continuing to expand international programs ong>ofong> the ong>Schoolong> ong>ofong> ong>Engineeringong>, Dean Nguyen and his directors ong>ofong> international programs visited eight universities in Europe and Asia during the 2007– 2008 academic year. In August 2007, the dean and Prong>ofong>essor Frank Pao met with the dean and key ong>ofong>ficials and visited the laboratory facilities ong>ofong> the engineering school ong>ofong> The Catholic University ong>ofong> Leuven, Belgium. The next month, during a trip to Portugal to accept a leadership award from the International Network ong>ofong> ong>Engineeringong> Education and Research in Coimbra, the dean, along with a CUA delegation, met the vice-rector and dean ong>ofong> engineering ong>ofong> The Catholic University ong>ofong> Lisbon and visited their facilities. The two schools signed a memorandum ong>ofong> understanding to explore collaboration in research and education. In February 2008, Dean Nguyen, Pao, and Uyen Nguyen, Ph.D., who was recently appointed International Director ong>ofong> Programs in Asia, visited Kasetart University in Bangkok, Thailand, and signed an MOU with the faculty ong>ofong> engineering ong>ofong> this university to develop mutual education and research programs. While in Thailand, the CUA delegation also visited Burapha University in Chonburi, meeting with the dean and faculty ong>ofong> the college ong>ofong> engineering ong>ofong> this university. An MOU was also signed between the two engineering schools with goals similar to the one signed with KU. After the Thailand trip, Dean Nguyen, Director Nguyen and Associate Prong>ofong>essor Binh Tran, Ph.D., chair ong>ofong> the CUA biomedical engineering department, visited the International University ong>ofong> the Vietnam National University-Ho Chi Minh City, where an agreement was signed by the two institutions to re-energize the existing 2+2 program. Dean Nguyen gave a presentation to the faculty and students about CUA and the ong>Schoolong> ong>ofong> ong>Engineeringong> and explained the application process ong>ofong> the 2+2 program. The CUA delegation then visited the Saigon Technology University, signing an MOU with this university. At STU, Dean Nguyen received an honorary prong>ofong>essorship. Dean Nguyen and Director Nguyen then traveled to Danang, Vietnam, visiting with ong>ofong>ficials ong>ofong> Duy Tan University and University ong>ofong> Danang, with the probability ong>ofong> an MOU to be signed with these universities in the near future. 12 | cuaengineer Dean Nguyen received the leadership award at the INEER banquet in Coimbra, Portugal. Faculty and administrators ong>ofong> CUA and Kasetart University at the MOU signing ceremony. The signing ceremony ong>ofong> the MOU between CUA and the Saigon Technology University.
cuaengineer ong>Schoolong> ong>ofong> ong>Engineeringong> ong>Embarksong> onFirst Hong Kong Exchange Civil engineering student Thomas Lee has wanted to travel to Asia since he first met a group ong>ofong> Japanese children when he was in the fourth grade. Lee got his wish in January, when he flew to Hong Kong as one ong>ofong> five CUA students participating in the ong>Schoolong> ong>ofong> ong>Engineeringong>’s pioneer study-abroad student exchange. Lee, along with fellow juniors Kristen Kennedy, Sarah Luffy, Kathryn Kazior and Emily Growney, studied last spring at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University in the first ong>ofong> several student-exchange programs that will link CUA’s engineering school and foreign universities. Besides realizing a childhood dream, Lee sees this as an opportunity to gain experience in the international engineering world that might set him apart from other young engineers. In fact, China is producing more engineers than the United States and, increasingly, U.S. engineering firms are outsourcing their work and ong>ofong>fices to China, says engineering Dean Charles Nguyen, making China a hotbed ong>ofong> engineering activity. China’s ongoing industrial and economic boom also provides plenty ong>ofong> work for engineers. As part ong>ofong> the exchange, nine students from Hong Kong Polytechnic took courses at CUA for the spring semester. The CUA students arrived in Hong Kong on Jan. 9. Students studying at CUA from Hong Kong Polytechnic arrived on campus in mid-January. The exchange with Hong Kong Polytechnic has been several years in the making, part ong>ofong> what Nguyen sees as a necessary ong>ofong>fering for top American engineering schools. Other exchange programs are planned with universities in Taiwan, Vietnam, Malaysia and China. As with Hong Kong Polytechnic, CUA students in these future programs will attend an overseas university for a semester while paying tuition at CUA and earning credit toward their CUA degrees. This year’s crop ong>ofong> CUA students are biomedical and civil engineering majors, and their courses while in Hong Kong focused on the core curricula ong>ofong> those subjects, taught in English. While students took the same core curricula ong>ofong>fered at CUA, the benefit ong>ofong> taking those courses in China is an opportunity to see, firsthand, how a country with such an emerging, global engineering presence frames those subjects. In preparation for their travels, the five CUA students spent the fall 2007 semester preparing to better integrate into Chinese culture by taking Chinese 101, an introductory course on Chinese language and culture organized by the engineering school in collaboration with the ong>Schoolong> ong>ofong> Arts and Sciences. The students stayed in Hong Kong until May, when the semester ended, with an option to extend the stay. Many ong>ofong> the students traveled in mainland China during their exchange. Dean Nguyen visited them in February to observe the program and see how they were acclimating. Nguyen says he believes these partnerships are a two-way street, allowing for the best and brightest foreign engineers to attend CUA for a semester — and perhaps return here for graduate school. “This study abroad program was established to make our future graduates fully immersed in what is, increasingly, a global engineering market,” says Dean Nguyen. (From left) Emily Growney, Thomas Lee Jr., Kathryn Kazior, Kristen Kennedy, Sarah Luffy Hong Kong students in Pangborn Hall. fall2008 | 13