In his address, Professor Holman stressed the importance of partnership with the Chemical Research Society of India and was pleased how the association between the two societies has grown from strength to strength in the last ten years.
“Working together isn’t just important at the level of individuals. It’s really important for institutions to come together as well. At the RSC we believe in the power of partnership; here in India the CRSI is our oldest and most important partner. We’re both committed to bringing Indian and UK chemists together, because we know that it brings huge benefits,” he said.
Over 300 students attended the symposium that comprised eminent speakers from India and the UK delivering lectures. Dr Philip Fowler (Oxford University), Dr Deborah Kays (Nottingham University) and Dr Iseult Lynch (Edinburgh University) were part of the UK delegation.
At the university campus, Professor Holman also interacted with undergraduate students from colleges around Guwahati to understand the collegiate education and their career aspirations, besides sharing his experience of teaching in the UK.
A day prior to the symposium, Professor Holman travelled to Shillong, the rock capital of India, to spend a day with students at a Salters’ Chemistry Camp at North Eastern Hill University (NEHU). Salters’ Chemistry Camps are part of the Yusuf Hamied Inspirational Education Programme (YHICP), set up to improve the quality of chemistry education in India. The programme is funded and supported by Dr Yusuf Hamied, Non-Executive Chairman, Cipla Pharmaceuticals Limited, and delivered by the Royal Society of Chemistry.
Earlier in the week, Professor Holman met Dr Yusuf Hamied at his impressive R&D facility in Mumbai and updated him on the progress of the education programme, which has trained over 9,000 teachers. He also met Anand Mahindra, chairman of large Indian business conglomerate Mahindra Group, who was keen to know more about the Royal Society of Chemistry and our work in India.