Indiana University Kokomo

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KOKOMO, Ind. — A visiting professor from Saudi Arabia learns first-hand about the benefits of providing undergraduate research to students after a visit at Indiana University Kokomo.

IUKL4386Visiting professor Ishaq Zaafarany helps with solar energy research.

Ishaq Zaafarany, associate professor of chemistry from Umm Al-Qura University, Mecca, spent two weeks visiting Kasem Kasem, professor of chemistry in the School of Sciences. He plans share this important piece of undergraduate education with his own colleagues.

Zaafarany is in the United States on sabbatical, and was interested not only in Kasem’s research in solar energy, but on the campus focus on undergraduate research.

“I admire that IU Kokomo supports undergraduates to do research,” Zaafarany said. “This will help them after they graduate, whether they go on to advanced studies or work in industry.”

Kasem said he is a strong believer in providing research opportunities to undergraduate students, and was glad to share his experiences with Zaafarany.

“Research is part of education,” Kasem said. “It sets our students up for future success, in the classroom and beyond. I am happy to share our experiences, so our colleagues can learn from it.”

In addition to learning about how to involve undergraduate students in research, Zaafarany viewed Kasem’s research.

“There is terrific interest in solar energy in Saudi Arabia,” he said. “Dr. Kasem is doing fantastic work in solar resources. I hope we can establish some professional collaboration, and learn from one another.”

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.