Innovation Notes from Asia...
University of Maryland President Wallace Loh is extending his Asia strategy with an innovation tour of Taiwan and South Korea – his third trip to the region since taking office in 2010. Through high-level meetings, Loh is laying the groundwork for new research and educational partnerships .
Monday, June 11, 2012
Begin at the Top
At the Presidential office building this morning, I had the honor to meet with Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou, who values our already extensive collaboration with his nation. Expanding these partnerships will provide mutual benefit.
President Ma is committed to education and an innovation-driven industrial model. He identifies talent as Taiwan's most important natural resource, and the key to national development.
The University of Maryland has a long history with President Ma. Three decades ago he served as a research consultant at the School of Law. Over the years he has continued to collaborate with Maryland-based faculty. These relationships and our mutual interests set the framework for the work ahead. An excellent beginning.
Hsinchu Science Park
The University of Maryland International Incubator and Taiwan’s Hsinchu Science Park have agreed to work over the next five years to nurture high-tech companies and situate them in our facilities. Our International Incubator in College Park serves as a launch pad for foreign companies wishing to do business in Maryland. The Memorandum of Understanding we signed calls for “collaboration through technology transfer, venture incubation, and investment.”
Following the signing, we had a productive roundtable discussion with national officials on the most productive technological and scientific areas for collaboration.
Team Teaching Half a World Away
We set the stage today to expand our collaborations with the highly prestigious National Taiwan University (NTU). Currently, 33 faculty members at NTU graduated from UMD. At Maryland, 40 faculty members have degrees from NTU. Our two institutions have been collaborating since 1995 and the level and extent of cooperation continues to grow.
We recently began a team-taught program on nutrition genomics underway, using videoconferencing technology. Now we are back to expand the number of participants and arrange for additonal collaborations.
These kinds of programs make it affordable to bring experts half a world away into our classrooms on a regular basis, and they give our students an entirely new and expansive experience.
Sunday, June 10, 2012
Build on Success
Downtown Taipei looked normal enough this morning after a 6.5 magnitude earthquake shook us awake...
...We’re all safe, and no serious damage or injuries have been reported.
We used our first day to visit with our “ambassadors” here – Taiwanese researchers, educators, business people and government officials who have who worked with us and will advocate for us. We’re building on our successes.
We had dinner with some of our strongest advocates, leaders of our Taiwanese alumni. The Taipei Terps chapter is the biggest in the world, and many of its members hold positions of influence.
One alumna with whom we dined is a member of Academia Sinica, a prestigious Taiwanese research institution. Her children now attend UMD as well. She is interested in promoting new research exchanges, which may help us one day bring new businesses to Maryland.
Our hosts showed us great affection and respect, and we’ll meet with many other members of the chapter before we leave.
Day 1 Blog: June 10
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