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Ambassador of Sri Lanka visits the Jagiellonian University

Ambassador of Sri Lanka visits the Jagiellonian University

On 26 March, the Jagiellonian University was visited by the Ambassador of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka in Poland, Sriyanee Dhammika Kumari Semasinghe. She was received in Collegium Novum by the JU Rector Prof. Jacek Popiel and JU Vice-Rector for International Relations Prof. Dorota Malec.

Prof. Dorota Malec pointed out that the Jagiellonian University currently collaborates with Sri Lankan scientific and academic centres only at the faculty level, primarily in the area of humanities, social sciences, exact sciences and natural sciences. She noted, however, that the Ambassador's visit has the potential to become an impulse to strengthen and systematically intensify the relations between the oldest university in Kraków and Sri Lankan institutions.

In reference to the previous statement, Prof. Jacek Popiel expressed his hope that in the future, the cooperation between the Jagiellonian University, the entire community of which remains consistently interested in the implementation of inter-university and international projects, and the Sri Lankan scientists and academics will flourish.

Ambassador Semasinghe expressed her appreciation for the fact that a woman, Queen Jadwiga of Anjou, was among the founders of the Jagiellonian University centuries ago, since her act irrefutably proves her deep understanding of the role played by scholarship in social and political issues. The ambassador also emphasised that the belief in crucial importance of free, accessible education for all has always been particularly important to Sri Lankans, as evidenced by the fact that during the over two decade conflict in Sri Lanka (1983-2009), the fighting was suspended during school examination periods or general vaccination campaigns (against polio).

After leaving the Rector's office, the Ambassador took part in a meeting to discuss possible research cooperation, which was also attended by the Jagiellonian University's Vice-Rector for Research Prof. Piotr Kuśtrowski as well as the Dean of the Faculty of Biology, Dr hab. Joanna Zalewska-Gałosz, Prof. UJ, Dean of the Faculty of Chemistry Prof. Wojciech Macyk, and the Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Chemistry for Research and Cooperation Dr hab. Piotr Pietrzyk, Prof. UJ.

Ambassador Semasinghe learned about the laboratory and research infrastructure of the Jagiellonian University, its general research directions as well as current cooperation and potential possibilities of recruiting students and doctoral students within the framework of the current educational programmes. The diplomat pointed out how important it is to be able to collaborate with the best research teams, such as the ones at the Jagiellonian University. She also expressed her hope for the development of research cooperation between representatives of the academic community of the Jagiellonian University and Sri Lanka.

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