Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) recently embarked on a significant visit to the prestigious University of Edinburgh, aiming to foster connections and explore potential collaborations in various academic and research areas.
The visit, led by key representatives from UTM, was a significant step towards enhancing international partnerships and promoting student and staff mobility. This initiative also aligns with UTM’s role mandated by the Ministry of Higher Education (MoHe) this year, as the lead coordinator representing universities in Malaysia for European institution relations.
The UTM delegation was headed by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic and International), Prof. Sr. Dr Hishamuddin Mohd Ali, and the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation), Prof Dr Rosli Md Illias. They were accompanied by Jaffrey Samsul Bahrin, the Deputy Registrar (Vice-Chancellor’s Office), Rohaizan Khairul Anuar, the Deputy Registrar (Office of Strategy and Corporate Affairs), and Nurul Amrie Abdullah, the Senior Registrar (Vice-Chancellor’s Office). The University of Edinburgh’s counterparts included Alan Mackay, Deputy Vice-Principal International and Director of Edinburgh Global, Prof Dr David Weller, Dean International for SE Asia/Australasia, and Derek MacLeod, Head of Global Partnerships.
Alan Mackay, Deputy Vice-Principal International and Director of Edinburgh Global, Prof Dr David Weller, Dean International for SE Asia/Australasia, and Derek MacLeod, Head of Global Partnerships.
The primary objective of the meeting was to establish a platform for both universities to gain a deeper understanding of the evolving model of collaboration in the context of international partnerships. They emphasized the importance of alliances striving to make a significant “impact” that extends beyond traditional realms of research and academics. This shared vision aligns with the mission of both institutions to engage in collaborations that have a tangible and positive influence on society.
During the visit, UTM took the opportunity to extend an invitation to the University of Edinburgh to participate in the next UTM Presidents Forum, scheduled for 2024. This forum serves as a prominent platform for academic leaders from around the world to share knowledge, insights, and best practices, fostering collaborations and driving innovation in higher education. The invitation extended to the University of Edinburgh is a testament to UTM’s recognition of their esteemed counterparts and their commitment to nurturing strong relationships.
Furthermore, Alan Mackay and Prof Dr David Weller expressed keen interest in visiting UTM later in the year, coinciding with their visit to the University of Edinburgh’s Regional Office in Singapore. This presents a valuable opportunity for further engagement and knowledge exchange between the two universities. Such visits play a pivotal role in building personal connections and understanding the unique strengths and perspectives of each institution.
Looking ahead, UTM, through Prof Dr Rosli Md Illias, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation), will actively explore opportunities to connect the University of Edinburgh with all of Malaysia’s Research Universities. This collaborative effort aims to strengthen ties within the Malaysian higher education landscape and pave the way for impactful joint initiatives. The exploration of a signature project as a pilot study signifies UTM’s commitment to turning ideas into practical solutions with the potential to make a real difference in society.
The visit of UTM’s delegation to the University of Edinburgh marks a significant milestone in the journey of fostering international collaborations. Both institutions are united in their shared vision of creating meaningful impacts through research, academics, and strategic partnerships. As UTM and the University of Edinburgh continue to strengthen their ties, we can anticipate exciting developments in the realms of education, innovation, and societal advancements.
For the record, among the notable alumni of the University of Edinburgh at UTM are Prof Dr Rosli Illias, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation), and Prof Dr Zainuddin Abdul Manan, formerly UTM’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic and International).