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Campus News in Brief

Undergraduate programs now open to Indian scholars

Although Carnegie Mellon has an existing partnership with India’s Shiv Nadar Foundation to provide graduate-level education through a program in advanced software engineering, the university will soon use this partnership to make undergraduate programs in mechanical engineering and electrical and computer engineering available to Indian students.

Under the intended program, the first class of undergraduates will begin studies in June 2011. Accepted students will study in India at Sri Sivasubramaniya Nadar (SSN) institutions sponsored by the Shiv Nadar Foundation. The students will follow a curriculum designed by Carnegie Mellon and taught by SSN faculty trained at Carnegie Mellon. In addition to their studies in India, students will also study at Carnegie Mellon’s main Pittsburgh campus. According to the university, admission and academic processes will have the same rigorous standards that are in effect on Carnegie Mellon’s Pittsburgh and Qatar campuses.

“India’s engineers constitute a large proportion of key scientific and research establishments worldwide,” Carnegie Mellon President Jared L. Cohon said according to a university press release. “This new alliance enables Carnegie Mellon University and the Shiv Nadar Foundation a chance to offer India’s students a distinctive edge and international recognition.”

Video aims to encourage better choices towards sex

Julie Downs, an assistant research professor in the department of social and decision sciences, has recently received a $7.4 million grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The grant funding will be distributed across five years, as Downs produces a sequel to a previous DVD she created to discourage sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy among young females. Downs’ first video was titled “What Could You Do?” and was proven to increase abstinence for teenage girls.

“Our goal is to create a tool that will help teenagers make better decisions for themselves,” Downs said. “For the most part they don’t want to get pregnant. They definitely don’t want to contract a disease. By building on our research about what goes into their decisions, we can craft something that will be exactly what they need to avoid these negative outcomes.”

“I’m delighted to see such a strong funding endorsement of the application of quality behavioral decision research to the design and testing of key interventions,” said John Miller, the head of Carnegie Mellon’s department of social and decision sciences.

The new video is intended to help teenage girls make better decisions regarding sexual activity, as well as lower the costs of teenage pregnancies and disease treatment for health care agencies.

The new video is intended to help teenage girls make better decisions regarding sexuality, as well as lower the costs of teenage pregnancies and disease treatment for private and public health care agencies.