The University of Houston and Texas Southern University have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the purpose of strengthening the relationship between the two nearby universities that would provide opportunities for cooperative research and education.
The MOU will provide complementary research for undergraduate, graduate and postdoctoral students. Students from both universities will be able to use all tools for research with no limitations.
The primary purpose for the MOU is to further collaborations between TSU and UH through academic programs as well as research and faculty development.
According to TSU's Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Research Sunny Ohia, "This MOU will serve as a means to create pilot or seed programs between the two institutions designed to attract research grants. Federal agencies are looking for greater collaboration among institutions and disciplines to address the major research issues. This partnership will facilitate a new level of collaboration between our institutions."
Don Birx, vice president for research at the University of Houston, agrees.
"UH and TSU look forward to strengthening our existing partnership and looking for more collaborative opportunities," Birx said. "With its HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) distinction, TSU can pursue research funding from special programs that might be strengthened by UH's expertise, so we look forward to finding new ways to work together."
According to National Science Foundation data, in 2007, federal agencies awarded more than $723 million in research and development funds to minority-serving institutions for science and engineering projects.
Contingent on the availability of funds and approval of both institutions, funds may be provided to either university for research programs based on details set forth through individual program agreements. Both institutions also have the right to publish research findings for public consumption.
Even though the MOU sets the basic framework for the collaborations, separate program agreements will be created to define terms on a project-by-project basis. Nondisclosure agreements will be executed in the event either party has to disclose proprietary or other privileged information as a result of the MOU.