Charles W. Steger, president of Virginia Tech, and Jaime Parada Avila, director general of the National Council for Science and Technology of the United Mexican States (CONACYT), have signed an agreement that provides for development of a multi-year cooperative education program.

The Letter of Intent covers collaborative research, graduate student education, exchange of faculty and researchers, postdoctoral training and faculty sabbaticals, and other collaborative initiatives. Vice Provost for Outreach and International Affairs John E. Dooley represented Virginia Tech at the ceremony, which was held at the Auditorio Hilton de Guadalajara, Centro de Convenciones on June 29.

Founded in 1872 as a land-grant college, Virginia Tech has grown to become the largest university in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Today, Virginia Tech’s eight colleges are dedicated to putting knowledge to work through teaching, research, and outreach activities and to fulfilling its vision to be among the top 30 research universities in the nation. At its 2,600-acre main campus located in Blacksburg and other campus centers in Northern Virginia, Hampton Roads, Richmond, and Roanoke, Virginia Tech enrolls more than 28,000 full- and part-time undergraduate and graduate students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries in 170 academic degree programs. Last year, Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs conducted 450 courses, seminars, conferences, programs, and workshops for more than 70,000 people in the United States and managed $26 million in economic development programs in 20 countries. Virginia Tech also developed the world’s third fastest and least expensive supercomputer.

CONACYT is the science and innovation arm of the Mexican government. It works in partnership with industry and academia to encourage innovative practices and the creation and dissemination of knowledge, making sure that new ideas are translated into economic and social benefits for all Mexicans. CONACYT encourages collaborative programs with institutions of higher learning around the world.