Embry-Riddle Expands Global Reach to Barcelona, Spain

Faculty from both universities will jointly develop and deliver a master's degree in aeronautical management designed to address the expanding aviation and aerospace industry in Spain and the rest of the European Union.


Daytona Beach, Fla., Feb. 9, 2007 – Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Worldwide is expanding its global enterprise to include a new partnership with the Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona (UAB), a major university with over 50,000 students in Barcelona, Spain. Faculty from both universities will jointly develop and deliver a master's degree in aeronautical management designed to address the expanding aviation and aerospace industry in Spain and the rest of the European Union.

The joint curriculum will be patterned after the existing master of aeronautical science degree at Embry-Riddle. Current plans call for the curriculum to be submitted to the Catalan government by September 2007 for approval. The degree is scheduled to begin in September 2008. Each university will teach half of the prescribed curriculum with a single diploma carrying both university seals being awarded to graduates of the program.

Home to a comprehensive aviation marketplace with four airports, the city of Barcelona in the autonomous community of Catalonia is a major international cultural center and one of the most economically robust regions of Spain. "We are privileged to work in partnership with the Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona," said Marty Smith, chancellor of Embry-Riddle's Worldwide campus. "This program will be a key component in addressing the educational and aviation needs of Catalonia and Spain as their aviation industry continues to expand at such a rapid pace, while concurrently transitioning from the Joint Aviation Authority to the European Aviation Safety Agency."

"The commitment of UAB in fostering a new degree in aeronautical management is founded on strong interaction between the aeronautical sector and our international partnership," said Lluis Ferrer, rector of UAB, in the meeting with the Embry-Riddle delegation. "In such a vision, the agreements with Embry-Riddle will strategically position UAB as a catalyst establishing high-quality, internationally recognized educational programs in a short timeframe."

"After the new degree launches in September 2008, the universities intend to continue their momentum by developing an Institute of Aviation Management to act as a think tank to advise and direct the growing aviation and aerospace industry in Spain and Southern Europe," according to Dr. John R. Watret, vice-chancellor for academic affairs for Embry-Riddle Worldwide.

"We are very pleased to extend our partnership with UAB for the specific development of this joint degree and the institute. This will establish Embry- Riddle's presence in Spain and Southern Europe and extend opportunities to the rest of the European Union," said Dr. Karen Shehi, assistant chancellor of global strategy and international relations for Embry-Riddle Worldwide, who accompanied Smith and Watret on the trip to finalize the agreement. "As the leading edge of Embry-Riddle's commitment to invest in global development and expansion, the Worldwide campus is also working on opportunities in China, Brazil, Germany, Canada, the Middle East, and in other Asian countries," noted Shehi.

As a major public university, the UAB is committed to implementing new forms of teaching, training, and research dedicated to serving the society in which it is embedded. To that end, the UAB chose to offer a new degree in aeronautical management in order to educate decision-making professionals in the air transport field in making high-level, strategic management decisions, as in aircraft maintenance and routing policies, and in making low-level operational decisions, such as handling and balancing the goods in an aircraft.

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