Rajiv R. Mohan, MSc, PhD, FARVO, a professor of ophthalmology and molecular medicine at the University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine, has taken on an additional role at the college. Mohan is now also serving as the director of international outreach.
“When I was named dean of the college, I began to look for untapped opportunities to increase revenue, while at the same time I wanted to establish mutually beneficial teaching and research collaborations between and MU and other entities, both in the United States and overseas,” said CVM Dean Carolyn J. Henry, DVM, MS, DACVIM (Oncology). “With his many connections throughout the world, particularly in India, Singapore, the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand, Dr. Mohan was the clear choice to lead our new international endeavor.”
Mohan said his goal is to elevate Mizzou’s overseas presence, with his initial efforts focused on India, the U.K., Egypt, Australia and New Zealand.
“My approach is very business oriented,” Mohan said. “When people come to Columbia to study and return back home with the experience they gained here, more people will hear about us and our programs will grow. We want to advertise our potential.”
At the outset, Mohan envisions attracting students to MU to take short-term courses to earn certificates. However with overseas economies growing, he is confident there will be a corresponding expansion in the number of veterinary schools and clinics opening overseas. Mohan said he plans to promote MU online and on-campus courses to students pursuing doctorates of veterinary medicine, master’s degrees and PhDs at overseas universities.
Reciprocal opportunities will also exist for CVM students to study abroad, particularly students interested in researching topics not taught here, such as certain tropical diseases.
In addition to establishing partnerships with universities, Mohan said he is pursuing partnerships with drug companies and hospitals. The combination of expertise and resources on the MU campus is attractive to prospective industry partners that want to accelerate the discovery of medical advances to help animals and people. Large generic drug companies in India are particularly interested in taking gene therapies developed in animal models at MU and advancing the work to clinical trials, he said.
“There will be a mutual benefit in helping each other in research and education,” Mohan said.
Establishing partnerships requires that a memorandum of understanding must be approved by both MU’s Council for International Initiatives Review Committee as well as the prospective overseas partners. Mohan said that at present four MOU’s are in the review process pipeline.