ECUADOR: First Salesian university included in international ranking
Salesian Polytechnic University has been included in the rankings in the prestigious ‘World University Rankings 2022’
(MissionNewswire) The Salesian Polytechnic University, located in Quito, Ecuador, has been included in the rankings in the “World University Rankings 2022” by the Times Higher Education, a British periodical specializing in educational news and famous for its ranking of the best universities in the world. The prestigious ranking evaluates the global performance of universities, their contribution to the dissemination of knowledge, their social influence through research, links with society and their ability to respond to the needs of the university community.
The Salesian Polytechnic University is the first Salesian university to be included in this international ranking. Within Ecuador, the university ranks second place and falls to the 1,201 position worldwide. The Salesian Polytechnic University is the largest of all Salesian universities with more than 24,500 students.
In 2019, for the first time, the university ranked within the top 100 universities in Latin America competing with 4,000 in the region. Across its three campuses, the university offers 27 degree programs and 10 doctorate programs, 62 research groups, 10 educational innovation groups and 98 Salesian Association of Universities groups.
“The Salesian Polytechnic University has been at the forefront of providing advanced education to youth in Ecuador who are seeking advanced degrees,” said Father Gus Baek, director of Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “The Salesian Polytechnic University also focuses on providing a college-level education to Indigenous students. A residence hall built by Salesian missionaries specifically for Indigenous students allows them to live and work together, sharing customs and knowledge. The university provides opportunities for these students to share their Indigenous traditions with teachers and peers.”
On Oct. 30, 2019, the Salesian Polytechnic University received an award from the Permanent Commission for Education, Culture, and Science and Technology of the National Assembly for its humanitarian actions and dialogue undertaken during the national strike and protest. Father Javier Herrán, rector of the university, and a group of students at the university’s headquarters in Quito received the recognition from the president of the Commission, Honorable Jimmy Candell Soto.
During the national protest, the Salesian Polytechnic University campus in Quito opened its doors to welcome and assist more than 3,000 Indigenous people from all over the country. The economic and social crisis that intensified in Ecuador triggered a wave of protests and repression by government forces. Thousands of Indigenous people came to Quito to defend the rights of those most in need.
People arrived at the Salesian center tired from their long marches. Many were injured by tear gas, which the police used in response to their protests. Initially, the gymnasium at the university was utilized for the protesters, but the massive arrival of people made it necessary to furnish the courtyards, gardens and any place available to offer rest and shelter to those who wanted to peacefully claim their own rights and defend their country.
Ecuador is one of the most inequitable societies in the world, according to UNICEF. The richest 20 percent of the population receives almost 50 percent of the national income, while the poorest 20 percent receives only 5 percent. According to the World Food Program, almost 26 percent of all children under age 5 have stunted growth, increasing to 31 percent in rural areas and 47 percent in Indigenous communities.
Close to 20 percent of Ecuador’s population is people of Indigenous heritage. For poor, rural and Indigenous youth, education provides the best opportunity for finding employment, reducing inequities and breaking the cycle of poverty. Salesian missionaries have been providing education and other social programs for disadvantaged youth across Ecuador for more than 125 years.
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Salesian Missions – Ecuador
UNICEF – Ecuador