IU formalizes ties in Saudi Arabia, dedicates India Office

  • Nov. 4, 2014

Editor's note: This story from The Bloomington Herald-Times is being published here as a courtesy for readers of IU in the News.

By MJ Slaby

Indiana University formalized already growing relationships in Saudi Arabia and India last week.

IU President Michael McRobbie signed a formal partnership with King Saud University in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on Tuesday. Then on Thursday, the existing IU office in India was officially dedicated.

India is second and Saudi Arabia is fourth in the number of international students at IU. Of more than 8,500 international students at IU campuses this fall, almost 1,200 students are from India and almost 600 students are from Saudi Arabia.

The Saudi Arabia trip -- along with McRobbie’s September trip to Turkey -- is the focus of a forum at 4 p.m. next Tuesday in Presidents Hall of Franklin Hall. David Zaret, IU vice president for international affairs, will speak at the event and answer questions about IU’s global partners.

On both trips, McRobbie met with government and business leaders, which include IU alumni.

The new agreement with King Saud University will build on longstanding collaboration, especially in dentistry. Nine of the current 90 master’s students in the IU School of Dentistry in Indianapolis are from King Saud University.

During the trip to Saudi Arabia, McRobbie also gave Sami Baroum, a Kelley School of Business alumnus and Middle Eastern business leader, with the Thomas Hart Benton Medallion, honoring his achievement in public office and service as well as dedication to IU values.

Laurie Burns McRobbie, IU first lady, also was on the trip and visited Princess Nora University, a public women’s university in Riyadh and the largest women’s university in the world.

The India office is in Gurgaon near New Delhi, and IU currently has relationships with several Indian universities and is developing relationships in optometry and ophthalmology.

The forum about IU trips to Turkey and Saudi Arabia will be live-streamed and archived at www.broadcast.iu.edu.

Anyone interested in going to it is encouraged to send an email to ovipa@iu.edu today.