On Friday, January 9, NMSU hosted visitors representing the Association of the Friends of Azerbaijan (AFAZ). Visiting were Mr. Kemal Oksuz, President of AFAZ, and Dr. Resul Aksoy.
A signing Ceremony was held in President Carruthers’ office where he and Mr. Oksuz a general affiliation agreement between NMSU and AFAZ,and a more specific agreement for NMSU to participate in a the Baku Summer Energy School. Sponsored by Exxon Mobil and other organizations, the summer school is an annual two-week certificate program held in July in Baku, Azerbaijan. It brings together world-renowned scholars, academicians and policy makers to examine and gain a better understanding of global energy and environment issues and their practical application.
The agreement between NMSU and AFAZ provides nearly full scholarships for six fortunate NMSU students with a focus on petroleum topics. In the weeks ahead a website will be established where NMSU students, as well as UNM and New Mexico Tech students, can apply for participation in the program. The College of Engineering and the Office of Education Abroad will both collaborate on this effort.
This development is part of a deepening relationship between officials from the State of New Mexico and Eurasian countries. Senator Mary Kay Papen has been working with the Turquoise Council of Americans and Eurasians on strengthening ties between Turkey and Azerbaijan. Last Spring Associate Provost for International and Border Programs Cornell Menking travelled to those countries with her and three other state legislators — Representative Lee Cotter, Senator John Woods, and Senator Mark Moore.