The Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture and Southern Polytechnic State University (SPSU), Georgia, the US, on Tuesday morning entered into a three-year partnership agreement at the Indus Valley School Gallery.
Executive Director of the school Samina Raees Khan signed the document, which had already been signed by the SPSU president on Jan 23, in the presence of US Consul-General Michael Dodman, SPSU link coordinator Prof Hussein Abaza and other guest.
Addressing the media and guests on the occasion, Ms Khan said while the occasion was a formal one it called for celebration because it was for the first time that the IVS had entered into a partnership with an educational institution with the focus being on communication design. The IVS had informal linkages with some institutions but this formal agreement was a great opportunity as it would help its faculty and the alumni body to benefit from the exchange in areas such as curriculum development. She claimed that the link was also in line with the IVS 2025 Vision that was to establish a culture of excellence. She said she was enthusiastically looking forward to the partnership where the emphasis would be on mutual learning.
US Consul-General Michael Dodman used the word ‘excited’ to describe his feelings on the subject. He told the media that the State Department was funding a number of universities. In Pakistan, there were 16, four of which were from Sindh. The project signed by the IVS was the first on art and communication design, he added. Highlighting the importance of such agreements, he argued that not only did they build bridges and develop linkages between US and Pakistani universities but also between the systems. “It’s a three-year funding commitment,” he mentioned and hoped it to be longstanding.
Mr Dodman said there were three areas in Pakistan — education, economic development and culture — the US wanted to contribute to. The agreement signed by the IVS would improve the ‘marketability’ of IVS graduates. He praised the school for contributing to the culture and beauty of Pakistan in particular and Karachi in general.
Link coordinator Prof Hussein Abaza of the SPSU said it was an ‘equal partnership’ between the two institutions and both would gain from faculty exchange programmes. He too wished that it would carry on for many years to come.
IVS link coordinator Suhail Zuberi said both institutions would gain from the project because the SPSU was a technology driven university and the IVS was an art and design institute. With their technological prowess and the school’s aesthetics, the IVS could enhance its profile.
IVS Dean Faculty of Design Shehaz Ismail thanked the guests for participating in the event and commented that ‘design’ affected everybody in life that was why it’s important to take the partnership further.Dawn.