Monday, April 7, 2008
Why go to India for a weekend?
Bloomfield College has entered into a preliminary agreement for CAT to collaborate with a large Indian company that is setting up an animation training center (Sumeru Academy of Digital Arts) in the city of Pune, and hopes to expand nationwide. Honestly, I had never heard of Pune before, but it's a city of over 5 million people, an industrial and university center about three hours by car east of Mumbai (formerly known as Bombay). See the green arrow on the map.
After speaking at so many open houses on the Bloomfield College campus, I will be be doing the same in Pune, only this time I'll be flying for over 17 hours (7,926 miles, by way of Brussels) to do so. Weather forecast for Pune: 100 degrees!
If Sumeru succeeds in attracting students, CAT will be working with them on developing curriculum and sending American teachers to India to teach for stints that could range from two months to a year or more. The Sumeru students will be pursuing an 18-month certificate program in animation and related areas of visual content, and we're already developing an option for the last month or two that would enable interested students to study at Bloomfield College in a special summer program.
All of this is at the early stages. It might come to absolutely nothing, or could grow into something big. Obviously we're hoping for the second possibility. And why only for the weekend? Because they still expect me to do all this other work back in New Jersey! I've been to over thirty countries, but never to India. I'm hoping there will be a second time, and that it will be for a lot longer than Friday through Monday!
I fly out of Newark this Wednesday evening (April 9th). Stay tuned to this blog for whatever pictures and comments I can find time to post while there. I'm expecting to be quite busy, but I'll do my best...