UofL and Botho University, a 17-year-old school located in Gaborone, Botswana, signed a memorandum of understanding on April 4. The MOU says that the two universities will work together on such programs as faculty member and student exchanges, joint research projects and conferences and exchange of publications and other academic material.
Ravi Srinivasan, pro-vice chancellor for administration and stakeholder relations at Botho, visited UofL’s Belknap Campus on Friday and toured its J.B. Speed School of Engineering. He said his school, which has about 6,000 students on three campuses, can learn a lot from an established institution such as UofL.
Specifically, Srinivasan said, Botho wants to find out more about best practices in student retention and student engagement.
“Our experience right now as a university is quite limited,” he explained. “We see a lot of benefit for us” in this partnership.
The connection between UofL and Botho was made by the Speed School’s J.P. Mohsen, who is department chairman for civil and environmental engineering. He has visited Botswana as part of UofL’s International Service Learning Program.
The relationship between UofL and Botho is not expected to be one-sided. UofL students can benefit through interaction with their counterparts from the university in Southern Africa.
“We want to prepare our students to be global citizens,” said Mordean Taylor-Archer, UofL’s vice provost for diversity and international affairs. “We value these partnerships because they provide educational enrichment … and global experience.”
In addition, visiting exchange students will “help enrich our campus,” Taylor-Archer said, “because they bring their culture.”