Dublin City University and Arizona State University have announced the establishment of a comprehensive Transatlantic Higher Education Partnership.

DCU and ASU have collaborated for 7 years to advance education and research in both North America and Ireland, based on their shared values of innovation and entrepreneurship, technology-enhanced learning, and research and discovery.  A number of projects and initiatives have been launched already, aimed at providing students with unique education and research experiences, growing the economy and positively impacting communities in both Arizona and Ireland.

Today three major new initiatives were announced:

  • In partnership with Ventana Medical Systems, Inc., a member of the Roche group, DCU and ASU will establish the world’s first International School of Biomedical Diagnostics in 2014.  The new school will employ online and face-to-face learning formats and will integrate the 2 universities through a global classroom model and will work closely with industry partners.  Admitting its first students in autumn 2014, this unique school will offer advanced degrees in Biomedical Diagnostics to meet the growing demands from industry for graduates with specialized training.
  • In a major development in healthcare research, Biodesign Europe will leverage the research infrastructure capacity and expertise of ASU Biodesign Institute’s eleven and DCU’s five health-focused research centres.  As a result, a combined team of over 400 researchers will address some of the most important challenges in 21st century healthcare, such as chronic disease management, personalised and stratified medicine, and sustainable healthcare delivery.  The initial focus will be on providing improved treatment for cancer patients by combining advances in earlier diagnosis with more targeted therapeutics.
  • Building on a strong culture of student innovation in both institutions, DCU and ASU will develop joint programmes in student entrepreneurship. In particular, these new programmes will incorporate a global perspective through linkages with international partners and a focus on global grand challenges, especially in the developing world. Both institutions already run successful student accelerator programmes and both are designated as AshokaU Changemaker Campuses in view of their commitment to social entrepreneurship.

The universities also announced a DCU-ASU Catalyst fund, which will be used to support engagement between researchers with a view to leveraging substantial income from research-funding agencies.  In addition, a Partnership co-ordinator has been hired to advance these collaborative projects and to support a planned roll-out of further initiatives between the 2 institutions.

DCU and ASU faculty are already collaborating across a broad range of areas, including international development, preventative medicine, digital learning, teacher education, sustainability, sensor research, digital media, and industry partnerships. The ASU-DCU partnership will make further announcements in the coming months regarding specific initiatives in these areas.

ASU President Michael M. Crow said, “ASU and DCU are like-minded institutions, with the same spirit and a desire to innovate.  DCU is a young university and is entrepreneurial, like us.  Lots of universities sign agreements with each other, but our focus is on building a comprehensive, long term relationship.  That relationship involves a global connectivity that benefits students and faculty at both institutions, as well as public and private partners in both countries.”

DCU President Brian MacCraith said, “I am delighted with the step-change in our relationship that we have announced today. Our enhanced partnership will lead to a better learning experience for our students in both institutions, will create new knowledge of importance to society especially in key areas of health, and lead to important economic outputs and job creation.  With the structures we have put in place, the future looks very bright for this unique, transatlantic partnership.”

DCU and ASU have a history of collaboration, and a range of initiatives are already underway which leverage the expertise and entrepreneurial skillset of the 2 universities. These include:

  • DCU School of Communications and the ASU Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications have recently joined forces with the New America Foundation to host an international symposium at DCU tackling questions on the reliability of news in a digital world.
  • DCU and ASU are committed to addressing the challenges and opportunities of ageing populations and are partners in the ‘Age-Friendly University’ initiative, launched in DCU in 2012. The first of its kind in the world, this initiative includes research in areas such as dementia, technologies for ‘ageing in place’, challenges of care-giving, healthy and active ageing, and retirement community design.

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