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11-07-2006

Clarkson President and Chaired Professor Share Importance of Patents, Industry Collaboration and Alumni Organizations with University of Ljubljana

[Photographs for media use are available at http://www.clarkson.edu/news/photos/ljubljana2006a.jpg]

The University of Ljubljana is an institution with a rich tradition and international reputation for its courses in humanities, and in scientific and technological fields, as well as medicine, dentistry and veterinary science. Established in 1919, the University boasts more than 56,000 undergraduate and post-graduate students, making it one of the larger higher education institutions in the world. According to Dr. Andreja Kocijancic, the University's Rector, "The course of study and projects at the University of Ljubljana echo the latest world discoveries and trends in the field of art, science and technology." ljubljana2006a

The Memorandums of Understanding between Clarkson and the University of Ljubljana signed on that first visit have resulted in some meaningful exchanges of both academic ideas and students.

Cherill Dambrot, a Clarkson chemistry major, spent six weeks at the University of Ljubljana, working under the supervision of Andrej Petric, professor of Organic Chemistry. She spent an additional two weeks exploring Slovenia and Europe. Dambrot graduated from Clarkson in May and is presently a graduate student at Leiden University in the Netherlands.

Marko Bitenc, a University of Ljubljana engineering student, made the reverse trip. He spent two months at Clarkson last summer working on a project supervised by Professor Ross Taylor, chair of the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. Bitenc is currently a graduate student at the University of Ljubljana and is working on a project in collaboration with Dr. Zorica Crnjak-Orel and Professor Matijevic.

There have been faculty exchanges as well. Stane Pejovnik, professor of Materials Science and dean of the Chemistry and Chemical Technology Department at the University of Ljubljana, visited Clarkson in April and delivered the first "Clarkson University Lecture." Professor Jadran Macek spent three months at Clarkson collaborating with Professor Dan V. Goia. Goia has also visited the University of Ljubljana. Matijevic, a longtime friend of the University of Ljubljana, has traveled to Slovenia three times since the agreements were signed. He has offered courses on colloid science at the International Graduate School.

Collins and Matijevic were invited back to Slovenia by Pejovnik in October to participate in a one-day symposium on industry-academia collaboration. The two were asked to give special emphasis to Clarkson's administration of intellectual property and to share their experience in building research and economic ties with industry.

The university also wanted to learn more about the relationship Clarkson has with its alumni. "Based on the old tradition, the contacts between our university and alumni after graduation are practically non-existent. I consider this a great fault of our system, which needs to be rectified," Pejovnik wrote in a letter to Collins.

Many of the companies that Clarkson and Matijevic have collaborated with have become vigorous supporters of the University. Two of note are the Shipley Company LLC (a Rhom and Haas company), and the Coulter Corporation (Beckman Coulter, Inc.).

Beckman Coulter produces biomedical testing instrument systems, including the world famous Coulter Counter, an instrument used to perform the most common medical diagnostic test, the complete blood count, or CBC. In 2002, the Coulter Foundation established a $30 million gift to Clarkson in support of ongoing excellence in engineering and science programs. This is the largest gift received by Clarkson in its110-year history. Clarkson honored Coulter by naming the engineering school the Wallace H. Coulter School of Engineering.

PHOTO CAPTION: Clarkson University President Tony Collins (R) is introduced by Stane Pejovnik, professor of Materials Science and dean of the Chemistry and Chemical Technology Department at the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia. Collins and Professor Matijevic traveled to Slovenia and Croatia recently to discuss the importance of academic-industry relationships and alumni organizations, as well as explore additional exchange opportunities in Eastern Europe.

PHOTO CAPTION: Clarkson professor Egon Matijevic and University President Tony Collins traveled to the Slovenia and Croatia recently to share their experience in building economic ties with industry and connecting alumni to the University. Matijevic is being introduced by Dr. Andreja Kocijancic, Rector, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia.

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Michael P. Griffin, director of News & Digital Content Services, at 315-268-6716 or mgriffin@clarkson.edu.]

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