SEEU Rector Zamir Dika, President of the Board Dennis Farrington, and Provost Paul M. Foster hosted the President during his visit. In addition to President McRobbie, Indiana University was represented at the ceremony by First Lady Laurie Burns McRobbie, Vice President for International Programs David Zaret, and Director of International Alumni Relations Eric DeHann. McRobbie was also present in Tetovo in November 2001 when SEEU officially began operations.
Michael A. McRobbie earned his Ph.D. from Australian National University in 1979 and has enjoyed a distinguished academic career first at ANU, and later at Indiana University where he holds faculty appointments in computer science, philosophy, cognitive science, informatics, library & information science, and computer technology. Much of his career has been spent in the establishment of advanced computing and communications infrastructure in such areas as parallel computing, virtual reality and high speech network testbeds, both nationally and globally. He also played a major role in the creation of the School of Informatics; directed the development of I-Light, the management of the Internet2 Abilene network and numerous other networks; and founded IU's Pervasive Technology Laboratories.
He was appointed Vice President for Information Technology and Chief Information Officer in 1997, and in addition was appointed Vice President for Research in 2003, and Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs for IU’s Bloomington campus in 2006. Michael A. McRobbie became the 18th president of Indiana University on July 1, 2007. IU is one of the largest university systems in the US with eight campuses, a total budget of around US$3 billion, and over 6,000 academic staff, 11,000 administrative staff, and 110,000 students. It is also believed IU has over 500,000 living alumni around the world.
Under his leadership IU has seen a major expansion in the size and quality of IU’s student body, a record level of expenditure, a billion dollar expansion of IU’s facilities, and the completion of $1.1 billion endowment campaign at IU Bloomington, the first phase of a $5 billion campaign to be completed in IU’s bicentenary year of 2020. Indiana University is one of only a few universities in the US where both Albanian and Macedonian languages are regularly taught.
Indiana University and South East European University have enjoyed a decade of collaboration and cooperation. In 2001, USAID awarded Indiana University a major grant to assist the university in its early phase of operations. In 2004, USAID awarded IU a second grant to focus on increasing the quality of its programs. During this period of cooperation, over 40 SEEU academic and administrative staff have visited Indiana University and participated in training programs, Masters and Ph.D. studies. At the same time, over 15 Indiana University professors and administrators have visited Macedonia during this time.