Brazil’s Universidade Federal de Lavras (UFLA) signed a letter of intent with the college in January to facilitate future agreements for establishing an international exchange of faculty and students, research data, and development programs.

“They know of us, they know what we do, and they like what we do,” said Professor Harold Burkhart, who has corresponded with the director of UFLA, a forest biometrician, for decades. “They think it would be mutually beneficial for us to work together.” Burkhart traveled to UFLA last July to present a seminar to faculty and students, and met with officials in the university’s international affairs office to discuss the idea of a more formal relationship.

“There’s a lot of interest in the forestry program, but it’s broader than that. They’ve got fisheries and wildlife, crops, soils, and they’ve done a lot of work in those areas,” Burkhart said of the university, founded in 1909 as an agricultural school. The next step in the relationship will be to draft a memorandum of understanding to outline specific areas for collaboration.