Media Releases

UofT welcomes Indian students for research internships

June 7, 2010

TORONTO, ON — The Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to is host­ing 22 of the sharpest young sci­en­tif­ic minds from India this sum­mer and intro­duc­ing them to lead­ing Cana­di­an researchers and their lab­o­ra­to­ries, ide­al­ly entic­ing them to pur­sue future grad­u­ate stud­ies and oppor­tu­ni­ties to work in Cana­da. 

Through the MITACS Glob­alink pro­gram, the stu­dents will be host­ed on cam­pus for a three-month research intern­ship. While work­ing at the Uni­ver­si­ty they will be intro­duced to the most cur­rent knowl­edge in sci­ence and  the lead­ing-edge of advanced inno­va­tions in Cana­di­an uni­ver­si­ties and indus­try.   

“Every year, tens of thou­sands of future entre­pre­neurs and sci­en­tists from India trav­el abroad to coun­tries like the U.S. or U.K. for grad­u­ate stud­ies,” said Arvind Gup­ta, Sci­en­tif­ic Direc­tor of MITACS, “Our mes­sage to inter­na­tion­al stu­dents is that Cana­da has world-class uni­ver­si­ties that pro­vide supe­ri­or edu­ca­tion and inno­v­a­tive col­lab­o­ra­tive research oppor­tu­ni­ties and com­pa­nies inter­est­ed in help­ing them to com­mer­cial­ize their ideas into the prod­ucts of tomor­row.” 

Fund­ing for the Glob­alink pro­gram in Ontario was announced today by the Min­is­ter of Train­ing, Col­leges and Uni­ver­si­ties, the Hon. John Mil­loy. 

“In an increas­ing­ly glob­al econ­o­my, it is vital that Ontario pro­vides its stu­dents with learn­ing oppor­tu­ni­ties abroad while open­ing our doors to the world as a des­ti­na­tion of choice for post­sec­ondary edu­ca­tion,” said Min­is­ter John Mil­loy, Min­is­ter for Train­ing, Col­leges and Uni­ver­si­ties  who announced the fund­ing for Glob­alink today. “Through pro­grams like this, we can strength­en our glob­al ties and attract and keep more for­eign stu­dents in Ontario.” 

Ash­win Ragha­van, a 21-year-old mechan­i­cal and indus­tri­al engi­neer­ing stu­dent from the Indi­an Insti­tute of Tech­nol­o­gy Bom­bay, said he was “thrilled” when he found out he was select­ed to study at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to.  “The research here is real­ly impres­sive and the pro­fes­sors are so involved with their stu­dents,” he says. “I will cer­tain­ly apply here for my grad­u­ate stud­ies.” 

The Glob­alink pro­gram is run by the nation­al research net­work MITACS, which con­nects uni­ver­si­ty-based researchers with indus­try through col­lab­o­ra­tive research and pro­vides unique train­ing oppor­tu­ni­ties for grad­u­ate stu­dents. Through Glob­alink, MITACS aims to pro­file the glob­al lead­er­ship role that Cana­di­an uni­ver­si­ties play in sci­en­tif­ic research and to facil­i­tate the recruit­ment of the bright­est and bold­est inter­na­tion­al stu­dents. The pro­gram will also pro­mote Cana­di­an grad­u­ate stud­ies and cre­ate life­long Indi­an-Cana­di­an friend­ships and net­works. 

“The Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to is increas­ing­ly an inter­na­tion­al des­ti­na­tion of choice for stu­dents around the world,” says UofT Pres­i­dent David Nay­lor. “One of our pri­or­i­ties is to recruit future inno­va­tors for our grad­u­ate schools, and like the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to, the Indi­an Insti­tutes of Tech­nol­o­gy are known for hav­ing some of the smartest inno­va­tors. We are thrilled that through the M ITACS pro­gram, we are able to play a role in host­ing these stu­dents and fos­ter­ing a strong aca­d­e­m­ic rela­tion­ship with India.” 

Priyadarshi­ni Kumari says she will def­i­nite­ly apply for grad­u­ate stud­ies at the Uni­ver­si­ty when she fin­ish­es her under­grad­u­ate work at the Indi­an Insti­tute of Tech­nol­o­gy (IIT) in Kharag­pur. “The research is more advanced here and the pro­fes­sors real­ly take an inter­est in your work,” says Kumari. The Glob­alink pro­gram also pro­vid­ed Kumari, 20, with her first oppor­tu­ni­ty to trav­el out­side of India and she is real­ly enjoy­ing both the Uni­ver­si­ty and the City of Toron­to.  ‘It is such a diverse, safe and fun place to be” she said. 

Anoth­er Glob­alink stu­dent at UofT, Ashish Baj­pai, took his first flight on an air­plane when he trav­elled to Toron­to for his research intern­ship. Baj­pai is study­ing robot­ics and mecha­tron­ics at IIT Kan­pur and will focus his research here on social­ly-assis­tive robots that may one day pro­vide sup­port in nurs­ing homes. 

Baj­pai is enjoy­ing his expe­ri­ence in Cana­da and says he hopes to return to Toron­to to pur­sue his Ph.D. “It is a very good work­ing envi­ron­ment here and I real­ly like the pro­fes­sors,” he says. “It’s not like talk­ing to a pro­fes­sor; it’s like you’re talk­ing to a friend.” 

The Glob­alink pro­gram runs in from May to July and is accom­mo­dat­ing 47 Indi­an stu­dents in Ontario. Over 700 Indi­an stu­dents applied to the pro­gram. The Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to, with its 22 stu­dents, is host­ing the largest con­tin­gent at any one school.


For more infor­ma­tion:

Michael Kennedy
UofT Media Rela­tions