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Italy, Korea strengthen education collaboration

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University of Siena Rector Francesco Frati, second from left, poses with Incheon National University President Cho Dong-sung, third from left, at a lunch event for a joint master뭩 program at the Korean university in Incheon on June 8./ Courtesy of Embassy of Ital

By Rachel Lee

The Embassy of Italy has announced a partnership with Korea in the education sector.

Incheon National University and the Institute for Global Health of the University of Siena launched a new master’s program on June 8 in public health, biotechnology and pharmaceutical clinical development with support from the International Vaccine Institute (IVI) based in Seoul.

“The new joint bio-focused master’s program is a unique partnership between industry and academia in Korea,” the embassy said.

“Most of the costs of each student’s education will be covered by industrial sponsors that will get in return knowledge on how to apply innovative and cutting-edge technologies to the discovery, assessment, development and production of biologics, and to overcome challenges in manufacturing.”

In its inaugural year, the degree will accept 10 to 20 students and classes will begin in September. The curriculum, including numerous courses and seminars, is organized into five modules totaling over 360 hours of lectures. Institutions such as, Oxford, Yale, Johns Hopkins, Imperial College, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the World Health Organization, IVI, the Sabin Institute and industry partners will participate in teaching activities, the embassy said.

“The new course will be part of one of the strategic projects of the Santa Chiara Lab in Siena, the Institute for Global Health,” the embassy said.

Italy-Korea cooperation in science and technology has a long tradition and has grown in recent years.

“Health-related research has quickly emerged as a priority, not only because of Italy’s traditional excellence in medicine and Korea’s focus on health-related services, but also because biomedical translational research is increasingly becoming a shared goal in both our countries,” the embassy said.

As a result, bio-robotics, biochemistry and industrial relationships on pharma-biotech are recognized as themes for common Italian-Korean initiatives led by the embassy. Four symposiums have been organized through its Science Office, together with Korean partners. A symposium on neuroscience was held a few weeks ago while a forum on precision medicine was held in April.

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