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Colorado State University to Align Research, Students with Universidad Autonoma De Yucatan in Mexico
Colorado State University entered into an international Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on January 21 with the Universidad Autonoma de Yucatan in Mexico to cement existing agreements on research and to open opportunities for students at both universities.
As part of its strategic plan, Colorado State is committed to growing areas of study that address global challenges and creating international partnerships to face those challenges. The University has sought like-minded institutions that share its vision and values for higher education in areas such as China, Argentina, Chile and Mexico.
"Every day, Colorado State University tackles some of the world's most chronic, challenging problems such as poverty, hunger, pollution and infectious disease. But we know those solutions aren't confined to laboratories and classrooms in Fort Collins," Dr. Penley said. "Today's global economy means problem-solving must come as the result of international partnerships and outreach."
Traveling to Universidad Autonoma de Yucatan to meet with their counterparts to investigate other potential collaborations between the two universities were Dr. Tony Frank, provost and senior vice president; Dr. Jim Cooney, Associate Vice Provost for International Programs; Dr. Rick Miranda, Dean of the College of Natural Sciences; and Dr. Barry Beaty, Colorado State University Distinguished Professor in the Arthropod-borne and Infectious Diseases Laboratory, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, and a member of the National Academy of Sciences.
Dr. Beaty is working with the Universidad Autonoma de Yucatan and the Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon in Monterrey, Mexico, investigating the dengue virus and Aedes aegypti mosquito origins of epidemic dengue and dengue hemorrhagic fever in the Americas. The studies have been funded by the Centers for Disease Control and the National Institutes of Health International Collaborations in Infectious Disease Research, and more recently by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
In November, Dr. Beaty's team, including colleagues at the Universidad Autonoma de Yucatan, received part of a $50.7 million Gates Foundation grant to develop a new generation of environmentally sensitive pesticides and other measures to control the mosquito vectors of dengue and dengue hemorrhagic fever - diseases that have emerged as major public health problems in tropical America - and malaria, a disease spread by mosquitoes that kills a child in Africa every 30 seconds.
Colorado State will receive more than $5 million of the $50.7 million awarded to the Innovative Vector Control Consortium led by the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine in Liverpool, England. The grant is part of a $258.3 million Gates Foundation grant program to fight malaria and dengue from multiple angles. Dr. Beaty also has received grants to train doctoral students from Merida and other areas of Mexico.
Colorado State has memorandums of understanding with 53 institutions in South and Central America, 16 of which are in Mexico. Most are in biomedical sciences, agricultural sciences and natural resources. The university has about 260 international MOUs on every continent in all areas of scholarly activity. Many involve students, both undergraduate and graduate, doing some form of research project abroad.