UC San Diego News Center


UC San Diego, CETYS University to Strengthen Cali-Baja Collaboration

Entrepreneurship, innovation and policy are initial focus for MOU


Photos by Michelle Fredricks/ School of Global Policy and Strategy

The University of California, San Diego and Centro de Ensenanza Tecnica y Superior (CETYS) of Baja California, Mexico have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to strengthen and increase collaboration, focusing on entrepreneurship, innovation and policy. The initiative was formalized March 3 by UC San Diego Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla and CETYS University President Fernando Leon Garcia.

Khosla said academic collaboration is vital to our cross-border future.

“This academic exchange will strengthen our partnerships and both of our institutions, enabling us to provide robust intellectual leadership in our cross-border community,” Khosla said. “We are privileged with the unique opportunity to engage in research collaboration with our colleagues from CETYS University on entrepreneurship, innovation and policy.”

UC San Diego’s collaboration with CETYS underscores the importance of cooperation in forming a strategic alliance for education and research that is mutually beneficial. As stated in the MOU, interaction may include faculty exchanges, undergraduate student, graduate student and postdoctoral scholar exchanges, joint research and educational projects, and special short-term programs and visits.

“CETYS University is both enthused and honored to formalize this partnership with UC San Diego,” Leon Garcia said. “We are building on preliminary cross-border activities already carried out in engineering, and others to be implemented in management and global policy and studies. The scope and reach of our joint collaboration will involve faculty and students, and create synergies with business and industry in the context of the Cali-Baja mega-region.”

CETYS University was founded in 1961 and currently offers degree programs in business management, engineering and the humanities. In addition to national accreditation, it is internationally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs. CETYS operates campuses in Mexicali, Tijuana and Ensenada.


The five-year partnership is supported by individual collaboration with UC San Diego’s School of Global Policy and Strategy, Jacobs School of Engineering and Rady School of Management. The Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies, based at the School of Global Policy and Strategy, has ongoing partnerships with CETYS faculty and students, and boasts one of the largest residential fellowship programs in the United States for multidisciplinary research on Mexico.

“Since 1979, the Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies has been the source for extensive academic research on Mexico and U.S.-Mexico relations, informing the creation, implementation and evaluation of public policy,” said Peter Cowhey, School of Global Policy and Strategy dean. “We welcome including CETYS students and faculty in our fellows program, and to gain insight from their expertise as active participants in our research, like the Mexican Migration Field Research Project on education migration and our work on the binational economy, exploring the ways our unique region creates value, jobs, investment and exports.”

The MOU will also support binational entrepreneurism surrounding innovation technology specific to addressing areas of need and interest to the entire region. Led in part by the Jacobs School of Engineering, teams from both institutions came together to publish “Envision 2020: The Border of the Future Starts Here.” Presented to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the cross-border SENTRI program, the white paper addressed potential technology strategies that could accelerate the movement of people and goods across the border.

“Cross-border collaborations are a key to the success of our region,” said Albert P. Pisano, dean of the Jacobs School of Engineering. “In addition to the ‘Envision 2020’ initiative, UC San Diego recently launched the Contextual Robotics Institute, a move that will further strengthen the entire Cali-Baja region’s position as a world-class center for the design, development and production of safe and useful robotics systems that act based on a real-time understanding of the world.”

In order to develop both regional and global entrepreneurs, the Rady School of Management and CETYS will take the opportunity to create custom programs centered on innovation and markets. One goal is to offer opportunities that will help grow the San Diego-Tijuana region.

“Sharing a border, we view Mexico as an important international opportunity for economic growth,” said Robert S. Sullivan, dean of the Rady School of Management. “We look forward to developing joint programs that will positively impact the region and provide opportunity and inspiration for graduate students.”

The MOU signed between UC San Diego and CETYS University joins similar MOU’s previously established with two additional Baja California universities: Colegio de la Frontera Norte and the Universidad Autonoma de Baja California, Mexico.