Indian- origin academicians, Neeli Bendapudi, Penn State president and Sunil Kumar, current provost of Johns Hopkins University and incoming president of Tufts University have been selected as two of the three co-chairs of a new Association of American Universities (AAU) task force focused on strengthening partnerships between universities in the United States and India.
Bendapudi and Kumar will be joined by fellow co-chair Robert J. Jones, chancellor of the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign according to a release by Penn State University.
The new group was announced by AAU President Barbara Snyder during the launch of the U.S.-India Initiative on Critical and Emerging Technology which was jointly launched by U.S. President Joe Biden and Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi in May 2022. It will make efforts to advance academic and research partnerships between both nations.
Reacting to the news, Bendapudi said,"It is an honor to be selected to help fortify the vital relationship between American and Indian universities. I came to the United States from India to earn my doctorate from an American university, and have experienced firsthand what a transformative impact these kinds of partnerships can have."
"By building stronger bridges between our nations and our institutions of higher education, with a focus on leveraging the enormous potential of research across international lines, we can further empower our faculty and researchers while maximizing the influence of our scholarship for the global good,” she added.