Fri, 5 Jun 2020

As some countries close doors, Canada opens it

Posted on Monday, February 26, 2018

By Ted Sargent

As the US and the UK become more inward-looking, the contrast to Canada’s open, international outlook could not be more striking. Canada is committed to forging closer global partnerships in trade, people, and in higher education with allies such as India.

PM Justin Trudeau’s visit to India earliest this month – his first as Canada’s leader – focused on bolstering trade and investment ties, as well as on promoting the rights of girls and women. Six cabinet ministers joined Trudeau on the trip, including Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan, Infrastructure Minister Amarjeet Sohi, Small Business Minister Bardish Chagger and Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains. University of Toronto (U of T) also visited Mumbai and New Delhi, where the Prime Minister had meetings, signalling the importance of India as a partner to the university.

Canada is already a leading education destination for Indian students; India is the second largest source of international students for Canada’s universities, colleges, and schools. Approximately 124,000 Indian students had a valid Canadian study permit in 2017, an increase of over 60 per cent compared to last year.

U of T saw a dramatic increase in Indian students registering in 2017, compared to 2016 – a trend that is gaining momentum. The university has long been dedicated to building alliances with India, focusing not just on recruitment, but also on research that addresses pressing development challenges facing the country. India-related projects at U of T have studied everything from how to build waterless toilets and earthquake-resistant buildings to helping make the City of Pune Smart CityIt is now taking this engagement a step further, and launching a programme with Indian Institute of Technology (IIT-Bombay), that will facilitate the exchange of scholars and research. The collaboration, funded by both universities will benefit Canada as much as India.

Ted Sargent is vice president—International--at the University of Toronto and a professor in nanotechnology


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