Academia, private and public sector, the synergies that are shaping the next generation of leaders in Colombia

October 8, 2019


Published in General News

On September 12th, the Universidad de los Andes School of Management received an international delegation of guests, the Greater New Orleans INC for the regional economic development, thanks to PROCOLOMBIA’s management. During the encounter diverse topics were discussed revolving around education and the alliances between the different sectors in favor of the Colombian youth. The event had special delegates from the Ministry of Education, the Secretariat of Public Security, the Iragapé Insitute and from the host, UASM.

The meeting’s agenda was divided into two moments. During the first part, the main topic was the convergence of education and the development of human talent. This section featured the interventions of Wilfer Valero, from the Ministry of Education who presented the higher education system’s overview regarding its current situation. Valero socialized the strategies that are being advanced from the entity within the framework of the different long-term programs and projects. He explained that President Ivan Duque’s administration has established three transversal pillars of action: legality, entrepreneurship and productivity, and equity. In this last component, the Ministry has a great responsibility regarding issues such as: the quality of education, the complete trajectory at the educational levels, access, among others. The government’s representative shared the following projections: through the Generation E Program link 320,000 students in the next four years for the equity component, 16,000 students for the excellence component and strengthen 61 superior public educative institutions in the country. Likewise, reduce the annual drop out in higher education programs to 7.8% (currently 9%), increase the rate of transit to higher education in rural areas to 26% (which is 22%), advance in the process of regulating the quality assurance system and increasing the number of students in high-level education programs, masters and doctorates (75,000 students currently) to 85,000.

Juan Pablo Soto, Associate Dean of Corporate Relations of the Universidad de los Andes School of Management and recently appointed President of the Colombian Association of Management Schools (ASCOLFA in Spanish) also participated during this first segment of the event. Soto talked about collaboration and innovation on behalf of the private university with the business sector, providing success stories of the synergies that have been generated with different industries. The Associate Dean shared some figures about the School of Management and stated that of the 74 professors, 87% have PhD degrees. The above, evidenced the high level of training that the teachers - who are educating the country's leaders every day - have. Finally, he invited the audience to reflect upon the importance that the academia understands the real needs that companies have in terms of human talent.

During the second part of the meeting, Jairo García, Secretary of Security of Bogotá and Katherine Agierre from the Iragapé Institute shared the projects that are being carried out by each institution regarding violence and crime.

The Secretary of Security socialized the policies that are being carried out from the public sector and argued that violence is due, in large part, to how people approach conflict. He argued that problem solving strategies can stop episodes, circumstances and even waves of violence, explaining that every moment should be assessed regarding the appliance of strong or soft tactics.

In his presentation, García shared the results of a joint work with the private sector where efforts were made to intervene - nonviolently – with the expectation of positively changing the behavior of more than 1,000 young people involved in acts of crime and violence. Through the support from the companies to the ventures, the difference in the participants’ behaviors were significant, allowing them to conclude that there is more than one way and approach to solve violence problems.

Lastly, Katherine Agierre, representative of the Igarapé Institute (an organization composed by a group of experts dedicated to the integration of security, justice and development agendas) shared the case of the Colombian city of Cali, that due to its social and cultural context is trying to find strategies to reverse habits of violence that affect the quality of life at local, territorial and regional levels.

Finally, both concluded about the importance of eradicating violence and crime in cities as a policy to promote a great quality of life and the attraction of investment and human talent.




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