UKZN strengthened its global academic access with the recent signing of a Student Exchange Agreement with Roosevelt University in Chicago in the United States.

The Agreement, provides greater exposure of educational exchange and cultural understanding to undergraduate students from the two universities and will allow one student per semester to complete a recognised term of academic study at the partner institution over the next five years.

Roosevelt University was represented at the signing ceremony by its President, Dr Charles Middleton, whose itinerary also included interacting with key academics and the Deans of the Faculties of Humanities, Development and Social Sciences on the Howard College campus.

“Student exchange is an education advantage as we work together to develop students and academic capacity. Faculties and administrators will develop intellectual partnerships and collaborate on impactive research which will strengthen the quality of education for both institutions. It is a thrill to be here,” said Dr Middleton.

Acknowledging the significance of the agreement, Professor Dasarath Chetty, Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Corporate Relations, said: “Active agreements, even on a small scale, help UKZN meet its goal of African-led globalisation. Knowledge produced on the basis of a thorough understanding of local conditions allows us to enter the global scientific community on equal terms with the best researchers in the world.”

The Dean of the Faculty of Humanities, Professor Donal McCracken, reiterated the importance of the partnership with the Roosevelt University stating that a large number of young South African scholars did not have international exposure. “To be really fruitful there has to be a two-way interaction with the global community. The Faculty has the largest number of international students in the University - what we would like with this partnership is to build up an exchange network by which we offer exposure to overseas institutions to develop our staff and in particular senior students.”

UKZN is currently hosting Dr Heather Dalmage, Director in the Department of Sociology at the Roosevelt University who is at UKZN on a Fulbright Scholarship Programme offered by the United States government. Dr Dalmage is contributing to research and scholarship at the Centre for Critical Research on Race and Identity where she is working on a research project titled: 'Race and Ethnicity; Post Apartheid First Generation Black – White Multi-racial family members.'