On Friday 18 February 2022, the stormiest day of the year, Mexican Ambassador to The Netherlands José Antonio Zabalgoitia and two of his staff visited Groningen. The Ambassador was welcomed by UG Rector Cisca Wijmenga. During the meeting that ensued, Mr Zabalgoita presented the new strategy of the Mexican government for science & technology, implemented by its main research funding agency CONACYT. Rector Wijmenga took the opportunity to stress the importance of collaboration with Mexico for UG. Since 2015, Groningen has been home to >30% of Mexican PhD candidates in the Netherlands and UG opened its – so far only – office abroad in Mexico in 2019, at Latin America’s largest university & UG Strategic Partner Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM). Both the Ambassador and the Rector confirmed their wish to focus on the further development of collaborative actions, in particular also the Double Degree PhD program.
The Director of the UNAM Office in Berlin, Dr. Alejandro Velázquez, joined the meetings and highlighted the uniqueness and quality of the strategic relationship between UNAM and UG. The institutions have so far enrolled more than twenty DD PhD candidates. During the subsequent lunch the Ambassador and his team had an opportunity to meet nearly thirty UG students and staff who had braved the weather to attend this special occasion. We plan to organize a special UNAM-UG PhD event during the Fall of 2022.
UG’s Department of International Strategy & Relations would like to thank all attendants, in particular of course the Ambassador. We look very much forward to continuing our mutually beneficial collaboration.
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