This week Secretary Arne Duncan met with India’s Minister for Human Resource Development, Kapil Sibal. Since their first meeting in October, ED has worked to strengthen the ties between the two countries through education.
In the fall, ED made a $300,000 grant to the Institute of International Education to create the International Academic Partnerships Program. This is a two-year project to help American colleges establish ties with universities in India and China.
In October, ED hosted 50 university leaders from the U.S. and India to discuss collaborations in higher education. The American universities included major research universities, land grant universities, institutes of technology, community colleges, and women’s colleges. The diversity of American institutions represented reflects the broad interest in collaboration in higher education.
In March, Under Secretary Martha Kanter led a delegation of American university presidents to Bangalore, Pune, and New Delhi to lend support to American institutions and their efforts to build relationships with Indian institutions.
Kanter also met with Minister Sibal and with students participating in the USAID-funded English Access Microscholarship Program. Over two years, students study English, American culture and democratic values through afterschool classes and intensive summer learning activities.
During the U.S.-India Business Council (USIBC) summit this week, the USIBC announced a new initiative to support engagement in higher education between the two countries. Secretary Duncan thanked and congratulated USIBC for their work, saying:
“Efforts such as this one are vitally important. In an interconnected, competitive global economy, the only way to secure our common future is through education. It is the one true path out of poverty – the great equalizer that overcomes differences in background, culture and privilege. In the 21st century, a quality education system is the centerpiece of a country’s economic development. Global education cooperation can unites us across borders and continents, classrooms and chat rooms, Departments and Ministries.”
ED will continue lend support to American institutions and their efforts to build relationships with Indian institutions and to the USIBC’s efforts.
Office of the Secretary