Rice University and the Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB) in India signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Nov. 25 that supports fellowships for outstanding graduate students from India who want to earn a Ph.D. at Rice in science, engineering or math-related fields.
The SERB-Rice University Fellowship is available to students who have a bachelor’s or master’s degree from an accredited institution in India who meet the admission criteria for the Ph.D. program at Rice.
This new fellowship will support a maximum of five students each academic year. Recipients will be awarded a stipend of $24,000 per year for a maximum of four years and will be eligible for a Rice travel award.
“We need many well-trained students to come back to the country,” said T.K. Chandrashekar, secretary of SERB, who signed the MOU with Rice President David Leebron. SERB is an agency of India’s Department of Science and Technology that has a role similar to the National Science Foundation. The Rice MOU is one of only five such agreements that SERB has established with universities in the U.S. since the agency was founded in 2008.
Leebron thanked Rice’s Pulickel Ajayan, chair of the Department of Materials Science and NanoEngineering and a native of India, for leading the effort to establish this collaboration and noted that Ajayan’s connections with SERB are “one of the big advantages of Rice having a very international faculty.”
International engagement is one of Rice’s priorities for the new century.