MY FULBRIGHT EXPERIENCE: Building a bridge between Columbia and Palermo Universities by Prof. Giorgio Mannina

On April 30, 2018 Prof. Fabrizio Micari Rector of the University of Palermo came to visit Columbia University.

The historic Columbia University Campus, labs and facilities focused on Water Reclamation & Resource Recovery were the main set of the Rector’s visit.

One of the main goals of the visit was to strengthen relationships between Columbia and Palermo universities.

Such visit was made possible through the mediation of Prof. Giorgio Mannina who has been awarded the prestigious Fulbright scholarship, and who is currently serving at Columbia University as visiting Research professor since last February.

During his stay in the U.S., Prof. Micari met Prof. Kartik Chandran, Professor of Environmental Engineering and Director of Columbia University Biomolecular Environmental Sciences Program and Wastewater Treatment and Climate Change Program. They both agreed on the importance of launching a partnership between the two universities, and, underlined the importance of setting up exchange programs targeting Master and PhD students of both universities. Exchange programs for Master and PhD students were the main highlights of the Rector’s visit.

“Research must be open to all and language as well; we all speak broken English and this give us the right freedom for opening new frontiers” Prof. Chandran said.

“One of the major aims of Palermo University is to be a door opener for young students so as to have their right life skills after completing their degree” Prof. Micari said.

Prof. Chandran will visit The University of Palermo next September in coincidence with the 11th International Conference on Urban Drainage Modelling and the 4th Advanced course on Innovative Wastewater Treatment and Modelling – both events Chaired by Prof. Mannina with the support of the International Water Association (IWA) the most important water associations in the world.

“Columbia University is one of the foremost centers of scholarly research, learning and academic leadership around the globe and it will be a privilege to continue a collaboration with this institution” Prof. Giorgio Mannina said.

Prof. Mannina acknowledged the Fulbright program through which such a unique research collaboration with Prof. Chandran and Columbia University began.

The Fulbright Program fosters bilateral relationships in which citizens and governments of other countries work with the U.S. to set joint priorities and shape the program to meet shared needs. From its inception (1946), the Fulbright Program funded the ‘promotion of international good will through the exchange of students in the fields of education, culture, and science.’