The largest-ever overseas delegation of Canadian university presidents arrives in Brazil April 25 for a week of meetings with their Brazilian counterparts, industry representatives and government officials.
The university presidents will visit Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Campinas and Brasilia to promote Canada as “a partner of choice for research, innovation and higher education,” according to the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada, which is organizing the trip. “We will also enhance opportunities for student mobility between our countries,” said Stephen Toope, chair of AUCC and president of the University of British Columbia.
Brazil’s Science without Borders program, announced last summer, will send more than 100,000 undergraduate, graduate and postdoctoral students abroad on international fellowships, and Canadian universities would like to see these students think of Canada as a destination of choice.
In the next five years, Brazil is expected to become the fifth largest economy in the world. The university sectors in both countries have long recognized each other’s strengths and are keen to forge closer ties, said AUCC.
The association organized a similar mission of 15 university presidents to India in October 2010.
The Brazil mission is being led by Canada’s Governor General, David Johnston, who will deliver the opening address to Conference of the Americas on International Education in Rio de Janeiro. AUCC has created a website devoted to the mission, which includes a blog, the presidents’ itinerary and other resources.