GTL celebrates 20th anniversary

2010 marks the 20-year anniversary of the Georgia Tech Lorraine (GTL) satellite campus in Metz, France. GTL is Tech’s first international campus.

“We will be doing a series of events throughout the year to celebrate the 20th anniversary, and we’ll be doing more or less quarterly events,” said John Schuman, GTL marketing communications manager.

During the 1980s, the Lorraine region of France was looking for research agencies and engineering universities in Europe and the Americas to drive innovation. Tech took up the offer to participate and established the campus in 1990.

The kickoff event of GTL’s 20th anniversary celebration was GTL night with prizes and giveaways at Feb. 26, women’s basketball game against UNC at home.

“We invited Georgia Tech students, faculty, corporate partners to basically come celebrate 20 years of innovation, research, and international education as we continue to work together to build towards the next 20 years of Georgia Tech Lorraine,” Schuman said.

The next event will be in June in Metz. Tech and the preeminent European research agency Centre National De La Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) are expected to sign a four-year contract for the GT-CNRS international mixed unit International research Laboratory.

“We are also working closely with French authorities on a large-scale project called the La Fayette Institute – a new building, clean room and research equipment- for innovation and technology transfer in the area of optoelectronics in cooperation with the Nanotechnology Research Center and the Enterprise Innovation Institute,” said Yves Berthelot, GTL president.

This event will also mark Institute President G.P. “Bud” Peterson’s first visit to the GTL campus where he will sign the letter of intent with the Lorraine region on the La Fayette project, a joint collaboration between the Nanotechnology Research Center and the Enterprise Innovation Institute that will provide resources and research in nanotechnology.

In addition to Peterson’s visit, Tech will be partnering with the French Consulate to co-host a two-week event, here in Atlanta, called “France Atlanta Together Towards Innovation.”

“It will basically be a two-week conference in conjunction with the Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, the French Consulate, university partners, where they will be doing, in conjunction with the conference, somewhat of a Taste of France, kind of along the lines of a Taste of Atlanta experience where they will be having local chefs and restaurants of French heritage or French restaurants participate in this event where they will be making local cuisine and so forth for everyone to partake in,” said Schuman.

In the next 20 years GTL looks to continue growing and furthering research, technology transfer and innovation. It also looks to continue to become a well-rounded, full-fledged campus with fully integrated activities for undergraduate and graduate students in research and international education.

“Many consider GTL as the model of what a U.S. technological research university presence in Europe should be,” Berthelot said, “We have created a node at the heart of Europe where Georgia Tech is plugged into a network of excellence in education and R&D.”