SEARCA, Agropolis Fondation, UPM sign accord for PhD Fellowships Program
Dr. Gil C. Saguiguit, Jr. (third from left), SEARCA Director, together with Ms. Adoracion T. Robles (second from left), Officer-in-Charge, Office of the Deputy Director for Administration (ODDA) and Unit Head, Management Services, discussed with Dr. Pascal Kosuth (center), Director of Agropolis Fondation, opportunities for continued collaboration through the MOU. Also present in the meeting were Nathalie Modjeska (rightmost), International Program Manager of the Montpellier University of Excellence; Pascal Gantet (second from right), representative of the GAID Graduate School; Dr. Jean-Luc Khalfaoui (third from right), President of Agropolis International; and Dr. Marie-Laure Navas (leftmost), Deputy Director General for Scientific Affairs and Higher Education of Montpellier SugAgro.
MONTPELLIER, France – The Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Agropolis Fondation based here and Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) to strengthen and promote scientific cooperation in research, higher education, and capacity building in the field of agriculture, food, and sustainable development between France and Southeast Asian countries.
The signing of the MOU was held at the Agropolis Fondation headquarters on 28 May 2018. In attendance were the heads of major French national research and education organizations in support of the joint scholarship program that SEARCA signed with Agropolis Fondation.
"The French national agencies saw the scholarship program as a vehicle to foster exchanges between French and Southeast Asian researchers, scientists, and students whose academic and research programs will be under the joint guidance of French and Southeast Asian academics and scientists along predetermined and commonly agreed research themes important to ARD," said SEARCA Director Dr. Gil C. Saguiguit, Jr.
He added that French institutions see SEARCA as their gateway to the region.
Under the MOU, SEARCA, Agropolis Fondation, and UPM will offer PhD Fellowships to Southeast Asian students who will conduct their research under the joint supervision of scientists, researchers, or professors from their respective home university and from any of the 41 higher education institutions and research units that are part of the foundation's scientific network, including University of Montpellier, Montpellier SupAgro, the French Agricultural Research Centre for International Development (CIRAD), and French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA).
Signatories to the MOU are Dr. Gil C. Saguiguit, Jr., SEARCA Director; Dr. Pascal Kosuth, Director of Agropolis Fondation; and Prof. Datin Paduka Dato' Dr. Aini Ideris, Vice-Chancellor of UPM.
Dr. Saguiguit, who holds a Doctorate from the University of Montpellier—the first Filipino with this distinction—has made great strides in connecting SEARCA to international development and donor organizations all over the world. This has allowed the drawing in of external expertise and resources to bear on agricultural and rural development concerns in Southeast Asia.
Dr. Saguiguit and Dr. Kosuth signed the MOU with Ms. Modjeska as witness. On the screen were Dr. Shaufique Fahmi Sidique (right), Director of the Institute of Food and Agricultural Policy Research (IFAFP) and Associate Professor at UPM representing Prof. Datin Paduka Dato’ Dr. Aini Ideris, UPM Vice-Chancellor; and Dr. Tee Tuan Poy of the UPM Faculty of Agriculture.
Dr. Saguiguit presents to Dr. Kosuth as institutional gift a replica of SEARCA’s growth monument. They were joined by Mr. Oliver Oliveros (leftmost), Deputy Director for Partnerships and International Cooperation of Agropolis Fondation.