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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Texas A&M Announces Partnership with the University of Haifa

President+Michael+K.+Young+made+the+announcement+Monday+morning+that+Texas+A%26amp%3BM+University+will+be+partnering+with+the+University+of+Haifa+to+research+marine+sciences.
Photo by Photo By: Kathryn Perez

President Michael K. Young made the announcement Monday morning that Texas A&M University will be partnering with the University of Haifa to research marine sciences.

Texas A&M University, in partnership with the University of Haifa, announced plans to establish a major Mediterranean observatory in Israel on Monday.

The observatory, which will be known as the “Texas A&M — University of Haifa Eastern Mediterranean Observatory,” or “THEMO,” totals more than $5.5 million in initial investments. It will be used to transmit and receive ocean data in the hopes that it will be able to forecast weather and sea level information, improve ecosystem science and management, prevent disasters and enhance understanding of regions and their adjoining coastal environments.

Texas A&M system Chancellor John Sharp said this agreement is a crucial step for A&M furthering its international goals.

“This teaching and research partnership is a critical step for Texas A&M University on its to becoming a $1 billion-a-year research giant,” Sharp said. “Who wouldn’t want to work with Israel — literally the subject of the book ‘Start-up Nation’ — where innovation is not only necessary, it is valued?”

A&M University president Michael K. Young said the reason behind the partnership was that international collaboration is necessary for modern challenges.

“This project is yet another example of Texas A&M’s leadership in addressing the global challenges of our time,” Young said. “It is this type of partnership among our faculty and their colleagues around the world at leading institutions, such as the University of Haifa, that will bring about knowledge needed for lasting change.”

Young also said as a research university, understanding and interpreting data is a key role for Texas A&M, one that will continue to flourish in the future.

“This builds on new technology and new innovation, particularly relating to our capacity to take information and analyze that information and try to understand it in a more profound way; what it means for the world,” Young said. “That is fundamentally what this university does.”

Amos Shapira, President of the University of Haifa, said the relationship between Texas A&M University and his own university produces many benefits.

“The collaboration with one of the biggest and best universities in the United States strengthens the role of the University of Haifa as the leading university in Israel in the field of marine sciences,” Shapira said. “Our understanding on what is happening in the deep water around Israel’s shores is one of strategic importance because the sea is the future of the state of Israel and all of humanity.”

Geosciences professor Steve DiMarco said understanding how the oceans affect humanity is and will continue to be a scientific imperative.

“Understanding how the oceans and the atmosphere affect humans is one of the great challenges of the next several decades,” DiMarco said. “And scientists at both of our universities are addressing this challenge by committing to the collection of long-term, sustained ocean observations.”

In addition to the observatory, the partnership between Texas A&M University and the University of Haifa will feature a faculty and student exchange system where graduates and undergraduates alike will be given the opportunity to participate in courses within each university’s area of specialization and use real-time data to advance research projects.
 
The project is expected to commence sometime in 2016.

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  • President Michael K. Young made the announcement Monday morning that Texas A&M University will be partnering with the University of Haifa to research marine sciences.

    Photo by Photo By: Kathryn Perez

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