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Somers, Wis. – University of Wisconsin-Parkside has signed a Memorandum of Agreement with Chitkara University in Punjab, India, for Chitkara students to study abroad at UW-Parkside and complete their Master of Business Administration degrees.
In a ceremony held virtually in December, Chancellor Debbie Ford, Provost and Vice Chancellor Dr. Rob Ducoffe, Chitkara Pro Chancellor Dr. Madhu Chitkara and Pro Vice Chancellor Sangeet Jaura signed the agreement, which allows students to complete one year of their MBA in India and then come to Parkside to complete their second year.
“Without strong and strategic partners, we would not be able to develop these agreements and educational pathways for students at both Chitkara University and the University of Wisconsin-Parkside,” said UW-Parkside Chancellor Debbie Ford. “I am so excited about the opportunities that are before us for the students, and having the opportunity to come together to learn in this new Global MBA. The new partnership enhances who we are as a university, enhances our learning environment, and fully demonstrates our commitment to be global citizens and to provide new opportunities.”
The two universities have a collaborative history with each other, signing their first MOU in 2018 establishing the partnership, and also sponsoring several faculty exchanges while co-hosting an annual international conference in India. Chancellor Ford emphasized the fact that the partnership has thrived through the pandemic.
Kuruvilla said the graduate program agreement is the next natural step in advancing the partnership. “Students from Chitkara will be a strong addition in helping UW-Parkside create even more global classrooms at our campus. On a personal level, this partnership is special because I lived in Chandigarh before moving to the US in 2000,” said Kuruvilla.
UW-Parkside Provost Ducoffe acknowledged the various recognitions and rankings Chitkara has received on the international level in recent years, the power of innovation that higher education brings to society, and the diversity that the partnership brings. Parkside’s Dean of the College of Business, Economics and Computing Dirk Baldwin welcomed the incoming students and stressed the value of the win-win partnership through the accreditation that the university’s business department brings and the global value that Chitkara’s students will bring to Parkside.
Chitkara Business School Dean Dr. Sandhir Sharma spoke about the international experience the program would bring to their students and the exposure to the business community in the Chicago-Milwaukee corridor.
“Parkside has entered into several creative international agreements with our global partners. Chitkara is a special one,” said Dr. Abey Kuruvilla, executive director for international affairs and associate business professor at UW-Parkside. “Our administration and staff have been hosted by Chitkara University on multiple occasions, our faculty have taught short courses there and we have partnered in joint conferences.”
Asif Ayoob is a Chitkara student and a United Nations youth ambassador, who was at the signing ceremony. Ayoob had participated in one of UW-Parkside’s two-week summer programs in 2019. Upon his return to India, Ayoob enrolled in Chitkara’s MBA Program, not realizing until this fall that he would get to fulfill his dream of returning to Parkside to complete his degree thanks to the partnership.
“I have been to UW-Parkside, and I’ll never forget the love, care, and affection showered upon me,” said Ayoob. “And I still remember the words of Dr. Abbey, who told me that we will support every student by all means, irrespective of their talents, until they reach the right track. That is the legacy of UW-Parkside.”