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THE UNIVERSITY of La Laguna brings a 227-year-old tradition to the Campus RUP consortium «, points out the academic institution of the Canary Islands, summarizing its contribution to the Campus RUP project. Its history, its scientific and educational heritage of more than two centuries, is one of the the most outstanding strengths of the alliance of universities of the outermost regions to attend the call for projects of the European Universities Initiative, within the Erasmus Plus program, La Laguna is committed to co-finance the mobility of students among the universities of the consortium, one of the main benefits of the Campus RUP project 43% of its students will study at another university in the EU-RUP area within three years, either in face-to-face stays, or through the virtual campus that the seven universities of the coalition will develop. Vice-chancellor in charge of Internationalization, María del Carmen Rubio Armendáriz, is a professor in the area of Toxicology, Faculty of Pharmacy. Her lines of research are focused on Food and Environmental Toxicology. Dr. Rubio has responded by email to the Europa Rup questionnaire about the Campus RUP project.
What is the underlying reason for your University to participate in the call for European Universities with a consortium that unites the seven universities in the ORs and does not join other consortiums?
This consortium is an opportunity to improve the visibility and connections of universities in the outermost regions of Europe to encourage mobility between them and the development of research projects in common lines.
What strengths and opportunities does your university contribute to the Campus RUP project?
The University of La Laguna brings to this Consortium a tradition of 227 years. Throughout all this time he has led the leading research of the region in all branches of knowledge. The generalist nature of the ULL makes it possible to sponsor new research groups and offer guarantees to new lines of research that may be generated, while presenting an infrastructure capable of hosting meetings between the different research groups highlighted by the consortium. To this we must add that the island of Tenerife, in which the ULL is located, has facilities and climatological and geographical conditions that guarantee an investigation of excellence worldwide in disciplines such as Astrophysics, in which today it is already a leader. Likewise, the island of Tenerife is equipped with three ports and two international airports that connect our University with the rest of the world directly.
Campus RUP foresees that 50% of university students will move between the outermost universities, within a period of three years. Are your institutions ready to face the technological, administrative and cultural change that is involved in building a virtual campus, recognizing credits and qualifications and understanding in English and in three other languages? In terms of physical mobility, will students have aids for their stays in other overseas universities?
The University of La Laguna already has extensive experience in the field of virtual campuses. In this sense, for more than 10 years the ULL has implemented a virtual campus system for all the subjects taught in the different degrees that is used by all the students and teachers of the same. Regarding the recognition of credits and degrees, the ULL has several degrees shared with other universities, including the ULPGC, so there will be no difficulty to perform such recognition. Likewise, the ULL is able to receive mobility students as it has done with the community (Erasmus +) and non-community programs (Santander, Carolina Foundation, Women for Africa, etc.). As for the possibility of students having funding to facilitate their mobility among the consortium’s universities, the ULL will co-finance with their own funds and with the funds coming from the project several calls for grants during the project’s validity.
Two postgraduate courses will be taught, a Master’s Degree in European Studies and another in Blue Economy. What will each of them contribute to the graduates?
These master’s degrees aim to train graduates capable of sensitizing the entire European community about the particularities of the outermost regions, both in international law and in matters of blue economy.
«The Campus RUP Project presents features never seen in a European consortium. The cultural and linguistic diversity of the outermost regions enriches the project due to its value in the world and its cultural tradition»
The seven universities of the Consortium are committed to creating science connected to the industry, and in line with the smart specialization strategy. How will Campus RUP contribute to European innovation?
The transfer of results and relations with society are put in value in our University through our own Vice-Chancellor Offices, with extensive functions oriented in this sense. European innovation will be the result of the advances presented by all the research groups from all branches of knowledge in the most representative international forums of each area.
What will Campus RUP bring to the European Higher Education Area? How will it contribute to making the outermost singularity better understood in European capitals?
Our universities are not new to the EHEA, so the ULL has more than two centuries of European history and university tradition. The outermost singularity has been largely forgotten in the project of a common Europe with fragmented territories and far from the countries in which they are integrated. This Campus RUP will contribute to eradicating this historic and economic injustice that requires visibility and value to the level of 21st century citizenship.
Why does Campus RUP deserve to be chosen as one of the first projects of the European Universities Initiative?
The Campus RUP Project presents features never seen in a European consortium. The singularities of the outermost regions do not detract from their research in the different knowledges that are developed in their higher education centers. The cultural and linguistic diversity of the territories that make up the consortium enriches the project because of its value in the world and its cultural tradition. The uniqueness of the participants in the project requires mechanisms that allow their visibility, making all European citizens aware of its importance and the need to equate them with the rest of the territory. The implementation of this ambitious project harbors the hope of reducing as much as possible the negative connotations that the prefix «ultra» brings to the reality of existing in the outermost regions, so that, in the future, its outermost condition is only a matter geographic.