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Shenkar College and UMass Lowell Establish International Graduate Engineering Program

Shenkar College of Engineering and Design of Israel and UMass Lowell signed a historic agreement establishing an international graduate engineering program at a special event in New York City on October 20.

The new international graduate program will be in plastics engineering with a course of study that includes the emerging fields of nanotechnology and the use of polymers for environmental, medical and industrial purposes. Courses offered by both Shenkar College and UMass Lowell will be recognized by each institution toward the completion of the graduate degree. The international agreement also provides for an annual exchange of students and faculty between the schools over the next 10 years, after which the agreement may be renewed.

Participating in the signing of this significant new agreement were UMass Lowell Chancellor Marty Meehan and Prof. Yuli Tamir, president of Shenkar College of Engineering and Design. 

"The study of plastics engineering is one of the most important disciplines that shapes our lives, from nanotechnology to biomedical research to environmental issues. This historic agreement gives us the opportunity to learn from each other and benefit from the strengths of each school," said Tamir.

"When we look at the educational essence of Shenkar College and UMass Lowell, we see an amazing convergence of interests and emphasis, from plastics and textiles to nanotechnology, medical materials and more," said Meehan. "Plastics engineering is a signature program at UMass Lowell, where we are making great progress in the areas of ‘green’ plastics and the applications of new technologies to medical devices. This international agreement will support research by our faculty and enhance the education of our students."

At the signing event, held at the Harmonie Club in New York, Shenkar College conferred an honorary fellowship to Meehan and presented the Frontiers in Science Award to David Pernick, UMass Lowell Class of 1941 and life chancellor of Shenkar College, for his role in spearheading the new agreement. Pernick has made significant contributions to forwarding education in plastics engineering at both institutions.

Founded in 1970, Shenkar College is based in Ramat Gan, Israel, a thriving city outside Tel Aviv. More than 2,300 students attend the college, majoring in fields including design (industrial, textile, fashion and jewelry), engineering (chemical, electronics, software and plastics), as well as visual communication and interior building and environment.

Among the other participants in the signing were Danna Azrieli, chairman of the Board of Governors of Shenkar College; Bruce Pernick, Board of Governors member and president of the American Committee for Shenkar College in Israel; UMass Lowell Executive Vice Chancellor Jacqueline Moloney, UMass Lowell Provost Ahmed Abdelal, Prof. Stephen McCarthy of UMass Lowell’s Plastics Engineering Department and Co-Director of the Massachusetts Medical Device Development Center (M2D2); Prof. Paula Rayman, Director of the Middle East Center; Prof. Robert Molloy, chairman of UMass Lowell’s Plastics Engineering Department; Prof. Shmuel Kenig, Dean of Engineering at Shenkar College; and other representatives of both institutions.