Queen's University

Co-tutelles give students international research experience

 
2012-04-04
PhD student Thomas Kraft divides his time between Queen's and the Université de Limoges in France through a co-tutelle program. Above, Mr. Kraft at Limoges city hall.

The collaborative graduate experience known as a co-tutelle offers myriad benefits for students, who have the opportunity to study in two countries at two different universities under the guidance of two professors.

“It’s a big gift for the student,” says physics and chemistry professor Jean-Michel Nunzi, who currently has a PhD student participating in a co-tutelle with Queen’s and the Université de Limoges in France.

The co-tutelle experience not only gives the student the advantage of working with two different researchers but also the benefit of living in another country, where they can absorb the culture and the language.

Dr. Nunzi’s student, Thomas Kraft (PhD ’14) , began his co-tutelle in France in September, spending a semester in Limoges before coming back to Queen’s for the winter semester. His doctoral program sees him travelling back and forth between the schools every four or eight months.

“The biggest benefit is expanding my research base,” says Mr. Kraft, who is studying polymer solar cells. “There’s an increased exposure to the field by working in two different labs.”

Upon graduation, Mr. Kraft will be awarded PhD degrees from both institutions, which he sees as a big plus for his future, either in academia or working in industry. Having the experience abroad, plus being bilingual, will open many doors.

Representatives from the Embassy of France in Ottawa and the Consulate General of France in Toronto will visit Queen’s on Thursday, April 5, to make a presentation to students on student life in France and opportunities to study abroad through exchanges and co-tutelles. The presentation takes place from 10:45 am to 12 pm in Mackintosh-Corry Hall, room E229. Later in the day, Embassy and Consulate staff will meet with senior administrators and faculty members in several disciplines. The meetings will focus on opportunities for academic and research collaboration with French universities.

 

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