A Florida Polytechnic University delegation is in Brazil this week looking to build strategic alliances with universities and high-tech companies in South America’s largest country.
The contingent includes Dr. Randy K. Avent, president of Florida Poly, Shahram Taj, professor of logistics and supply chain management, Dr. Mustafa Ilhan Akbas, professor of computer science, and Mustapha Achoubane, associate director of international students.
Brazil is one of the largest emerging economies in the world, according to a report from Forbes magazine, and is driven by extensive industrial, engineering and technological sectors.
During the seven-day trip, the Florida Poly contingent will interact with more than 2,000 engineering students to highlight the university’s programs and will also connect with international research centers and educators in order to join forces for future research collaboration.
“We look forward to strengthening our ties in Brazil through key partnerships with high-tech industry leaders and other universities that will increase international opportunities for our students,” said Avent. “This trip will enable us to develop strategic relationships between faculties.”
The delegation will meet with the founder and other top leaders at Embraer, a Brazilian aerospace conglomerate that provides aeronautical services and produces commercial, military, executive and agricultural aircraft. The main goal is to explore manufacturing connections between the company and the university, as well as potential project funding.
They will also visit two universities in Sao Paulo – FACENS and FIAP — that focus mainly on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. They will discuss a variety of topics including programs for graduate students, joint venture research, the diverse education models in the U.S., and the uniqueness of Florida Poly.
Avent and Akbas will be panelists at FIAP alongside leaders from IBM, Microsoft and Oracle, to talk about how artificial intelligence will impact every industry. Taj will be a guest speaker at FACENS, where he will discuss the effects of big data analytics in the global supply chain.
“This visit is a golden opportunity for Florida Poly, and for us as faculty, to be able to develop a rich collaboration with Brazil in academia, as well as in industry,” said Taj.