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Centennial President invited to meet Indian PM Narendra Modi

Picture of Centennial College President Ann Buller with the Prime Minister of Canada Stephen Harper and the Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi

On April 15, some 10,000 people flocked to Ricoh Coliseum in Toronto to see visiting Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in person. Being the first such visit to Canada by an Indian PM in 42 years, it proved to be an auspicious occasion with the enthusiastic crowd giving the popular head of state a rock-star welcome.

Among the dignitaries on hand to greet the Prime Minister was Centennial College President and CEO Ann Buller, the only Canadian college or university president invited to meet Prime Minister Modi at the Coliseum. Ann Buller had her photo taken with both Prime Minister Modi and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

Centennial College has a strong presence in India as a major Canadian college that is partnering with Indian schools and industries to bring new programs and skills to a country that views Canadian scholarship as a desirable benefit. Centennial maintains a permanent International Education office in Bangalore, India, which serves Indian students wishing to study at Centennial’s Toronto campuses. More than one thousand Indian nationals do so every year – and the number is growing.

Narendra Modi, leader of the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party, is immensely popular in his homeland and among the millions of diaspora that live outside of India. He earned a reputation for fostering economic development during his premiership of Gujarat, an industrialized Indian state that was made more business-friendly and prosperous in his 12 years of rule there. He has since pursued the same development principles nation-wide as prime minister.