Dean José Ramón Alonso Peña of Salamanca University and IBERDROLA Chairman Ignacio Galán today signed an agreement to establish ongoing links between the two institutions centring on joint research and training projects.
The agreement calls for the launch over the next two years of a variety of initiatives in the areas of research, technology, technical training, and recruitment. Joint research projects will be undertaken, and some IBERDROLA employees will be invited to teach courses at the university, while others will take training courses there. The company will provide grants and internships to job candidates among the university students, and will also furnish hardware and software to the university.
Galán said “I believe we are laying important foundations so that Salamanca and Castile-Leon can become a spearhead of innovation in Spain,” and underlined that the agreement, along with another recent one to with a software development centre in the nearby town of Aldeatejada, was “a milestone for the region, moving it closer to the vanguard of innovation and new technologies”.
Ignacio Galán stressed his company’s commitment to Castile-Leon, and pointed out that more that 40,000 residents of the 9-province region own a total of some €5 billion worth of stock in IBERDROLA, either directly or through investment funds.
Dean José Ramón Alonso of the University of Salamanca, founded in 1218 and one of the oldest in Europe, called the agreement “a qualitative and quantitative leap of enormous importance in driving research and development projects.”
He described Spain’s multinational utility IBERDROLA as “a first-rank technological partner that shares our interest in the new digital society, technological innovation, and capitalising on the new knowledge society”. He said the agreement “not only opens doors to our departments and teachers, but will also help our students to enter the work force”.
The signing ceremony was attended by President Juan Vicente Herrera of the government of the Castile-Leon region and local dignitaries, along with IBERDROLA’s Corporate Resources Manager Fernando Becker, the company’s delegate to the region, Joaquín Boneta, and all the members of the company’s regional advisory board.
The University of Salamanca is strong in the humanities and also in engineering and sciences, and is increasingly involved in advanced technological training in the IT and audiovisual fields, as well as the social sciences, the exact sciences, and engineering.
In keeping with its corporate social responsibility commitments, IBERDROLA has forged training and research links with a number of universities.
The aforementioned initiatives will centre on:
• The establishment of mobility programmes for researchers, teaching staff, and students with the wholehearted intention of removing academic barriers, both material and formal, that hinder the nimble mobility of university people and employees of the two institutions.
• Creation and organisation of coordinated teaching activities.
• The University of Salamanca will weigh the possibility that Iberdrola professional staff may take part in training actions as teachers or as students.
• Participation in teaching or research events whose subject matter may engender a synergic or symbiotic relationship between the two institutions, of both a domestic and an international nature.
• The University of Salamanca will facilitate the personnel selection process among its students, so that they may apply for grants, internships or other types of contracts that Iberdrola may choose to offer to students and/or graduates.
• Free transfer, via the signing of the respective transfer contracts, of hardware and software rights and components to the university to be used in the pursuit of teaching or research projects that the company deems to be of special interest for its lines of technological development or of Responsibility.