Texas is already a well-known magnet for immigrants and businesses seeking to put down roots in its relatively strong employment market and business-friendly environment. Recently, Texas A&M University has gained a reputation for extending that connection to students. Through its College Station campus in Texas and its overseas exchange programs, Texas A&M has become a hub for international learning and collaboration.
International students who intern at Texas A&M — mostly from India, Brazil and China — usually begin with a summer program, often at the university’s renowned Artie McFerrin Department of Chemical Engineering. Many of these students are drawn from top academic and research facilities in their home countries, including Kanpur University in India. Texas A&M clearly hopes that these summer interns will eventually become Aggies as graduate students.
“The goal is to showcase our research projects in the cutting edge technologies, with the hope that these students will gain very positive interactions with their faculty members, and would apply to our Ph.D. program in due course,” said Dr. Nazmul Karim, head of the chemical engineering department.
The university also sends out its American students to study overseas in new countries. This exchange of students through Texas A&M has made the university 13th among U.S. institutions of higher learning for sending students abroad to participate in credit-bearing academic programs. Indeed, more than 3,000 Aggies have studied at more than 90 locations around the world for a semester while sponsored by the university’s Study Abroad Programs Office.
American students studying abroad are enriched by an immersion in their host country’s traditions and culture, and they, in turn, share their outlook on and experiences in U.S. culture and its democratic process with their hosts. And Texas A&M University officials have a vision for what they expect of their American students when they return to Texas.“In order for Aggies to assume their place in the Texas economy, they will need to have a familiarity with how other societies function and markets in other countries work,” said Dr. Jane Flaherty, director of Texas A&M’s Study Abroad Programs Office. “Going abroad facilitates the development of this knowledge.”
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