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UT Tyler Announces Partnership with University of Sonora, Developing Spanish Immersion Program in Mexico

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March 24, 2014

Media Contact:  Hannah Buchanan
Public Affairs Specialist
Marketing and Communications
The University of Texas at Tyler
903.565.5769 or 903.539.7196 (cell)

March 24, 2014

The University of Texas at Tyler has officially initiated collaborations with the University of Sonora, Dr. James Nelson, College of Engineering and Computer Science dean and lead UT Tyler partner, announced.

The agreement established between UT Tyler and the University of Sonora, or UNISON, which is located in Hermosillo, Mexico, is designed to inspire departmental collaborations as well as increase student mobility between both institutions. Nelson and Dr. Jose Rafael Benito Noriega Luna, former visiting faculty from UNISON, initiated this international collaboration in January 2012.

“This partnership presents an outstanding opportunity for The University of Texas at Tyler and the University of Sonora to pool faculty expertise in a manner that will offer students at both institutions academic and research opportunities they would not otherwise have,” Nelson said. “The engineering faculties at both schools complement each other but have expertise not available at the other. This will result in stronger research programs and elective areas of study our students would not have otherwise. This is truly a win-win situation, and our students will be the beneficiaries.”

Nelson and Noriega organized a meeting of more than 20 UNISON representatives including its president, provost, deans, directors and professors together with representatives from the UT Tyler College of Nursing and Health Sciences and UT Tyler Office of International Programs.

“As a result of this strategic meeting, we are currently working together on a comprehensive action plan for collaboration between our universities,” said Dr. Teresa Kennedy, UT Tyler Office of International Programs executive director. “In order to promote active communication, a Spanish immersion program for UT Tyler faculty and students and bilingual teachers in Tyler, is currently being designed to take place at UNISON in the near future.”

The collaboration with UNISON will be of great importance to increase faculty and student exposure to a more diverse global community, according to Dr. Pam Martin, UT Tyler professor and College of Nursing and Health Sciences interim dean.

“Health of the world is becoming a very important component of nursing education. The ability to have students and faculty from both institutions become immersed in other cultures will enhance the understanding of these needs,” Martin said.

“Collaboration with the Universidad de Senora builds on the strengths of both programs and will enhance learning for students and faculty alike. This partnership will provide excellent opportunities for research collaboration that will impact health care locally and translate the findings globally,” added Dr. Barbara Haas, UT Tyler professor and associate dean for graduate nursing programs.

For more information, contact the UT Tyler Office of International Programs, 903.565.0062 or oip@uttyler.edu.

One of the 15 campuses of the UT System, UT Tyler features excellence in teaching, research, artistic performance and community service. More than 80 undergraduate and graduate degrees are available at UT Tyler, which has an enrollment of more than 7,500 high-ability students. UT Tyler offers courses at its campuses in Tyler, Longview and Palestine as well as a location in Houston.

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