Washington: The US is sending an education-focused trade mission to India with representatives from 21 US institutions of higher education to explore opportunities for partnership with Indian institutions.
Led by India-born Suresh Kumar, Assistant Secretary of Commerce and Director General of the US and Foreign Commercial Service, the mission, organized in partnership with the US-India Educational Foundation (USIEF), will be India from Oct 10 to 15.
Son of an army officer and a musician mother, Secunderabad-born Kumar served as a news anchor on Doordarshan, India's national television, between 1970 and 1985 before immigrating to the US. He was President & Managing Partner of KaiZen Innovation when President Barack Obama picked him up for the commerce job in February last year. He has also served as Special Advisor to the Clinton Foundation.
'This trade mission reinforces the strong educational ties between India and the US, and advances the shared agenda underscored by the Obama-Singh 21st Century Knowledge Initiative,' Kumar said.
'The initiative promotes public-private partnerships between institutions of higher learning in both countries, helping foster economic growth and opportunity.'
The 21 US schools on the mission, representing regionally accredited graduate programmes, four-year undergraduate programs and state study consortia from more than fifteen states, are a cross-section of America's higher educational institutions.
The mission will include student fairs and networking events in New Delhi, Chennai, and Mumbai, three of the top cities for recruiting Indian students to the United States.
Simultaneous with the trade mission, the US-India Higher Education Summit will be held Oct13in Washington, DC, chaired by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Minister of Human Resource Development Kapil Sibal.
In 2010, Indian students constituted the second largest group of international students studying in the United States, with nearly 105,000 students.
Kumar has published on global management and served as adjunct faculty member at the Schulich School of Business at Toronto's York University, Bombay University and as Professor of International Business at Rutgers University.
Kumar has an economics degree from Delhi University, an MBA from Bombay University, and is alum of the Thunderbird International Consortium Programme. In 2004, Kumar was named Distinguished Executive-in-Residence by Thunderbird School of Global Management for his contributions to global trade.