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Words in Anniversary 42 ° of the INTEC

Dear friends, dear friends
Past Rectors,
Members of the Board of Regents, Directors,
Teachers and professors, students, all and all,

Some time ago, in the city of Santo Domingo, a child was born whose parents gave the name INTEC. Like any newborn, at that time INTEC was a small and fragile figure, in the midst of a world convulsed by the cold war, in a country that was almost bleeding to death from political violence and in an economy that was torn between the new industry and the old agriculture. But the little INTEC began to walk with firm steps, encouraged by his vocation for excellence, and little by little he made himself feel as a symbol of quality in Dominican higher education.

The rest of the story is stuff you know. For 42 years, our institution has been a beacon of light and its contribution to our society is beyond reasonable doubt. For this reason, as every year, this is a moment of pleasure in which we meet with family spirit, to take stock of our history and visualize our future. I ask that you have a good time, that you enjoy breakfast and that you do not abuse the soft drinks. For my part, I also take this moment as an opportunity to briefly refer to the most relevant areas of recent months.

I want to start by highlighting the advances in the accreditation process that is contemplated in the Institutional Strategic Plan. I remind you that the accreditation plan in progress covers three programs in the Engineering area, all degree programs and several programs in the business area, and the Medicine program in the Health area. In each case, the process is unfolding with enthusiasm and a sense of urgency that I cannot fail to emphasize. The intention is that accreditation is a mechanism for quality assurance in light of international standards. This has already led to the improvement of some processes and the adoption of new instruments for measuring the results of the learning and teaching process, which in turn has made it possible to verify reliably, through concrete data, the exceptional performance of the students. INTEC students and graduates compared to national and regional averages.

On the other hand, this year the Infrastructure Master Plan has taken shape, which a year ago was only in our imagination. The Health Sciences building is no longer a model and in a little while we will have completed its structural part; Regarding the Postgraduate building, the bidding process has been successfully concluded and we are ready to start construction in the next few days; and progress is being made in the design of the new Engineering building. With these facilities, the institution will double its capacities in terms of classrooms and laboratory spaces. Of course, this will require investments to equip the new buildings, and we are in the process of generating the necessary resources through different channels, on which we are working hard. In that regard, I want to give credits to the generosity of several companies that have been supporting our master plan, in recognition of what intec means for higher education in the DR.

This year the communities of practice have advanced, which are still an incipient initiative, but which I am sure will consolidate as a collaborative work space among our teachers. The goal is that no INTEC professor is a bird of passage, but an active part of the real academic community. At the same time, we are developing new forms of care and use of our graduates, who are a vital asset for the strength of our work. In terms of research, we are having a period of high productivity, with a body of committed researchers, who are generating tangible and intangible results. In administrative matters, I highlight the conclusion of the first payroll audit carried out in the institution, in order to attest to a healthy use of the resources that society places under our care. I am pleased to say that the results of the audit confirm a healthy management, and that the opportunities for improvement have been are being or have already been incorporated.

But in an institution like INTEC, what has been achieved is the starting point for even more ambitious goals, so we have an agenda ahead of us full of new challenges to fulfill the provisions of our Institutional Strategic Plan 2013-2017. An almost immediate step is the adaptation of the structure to the needs of the Plan, and in this sense, an ad hoc commission has been appointed, chaired by the rector Altagracia Lopez, with the task of technically analyzing the current structure and presenting it to the Rectory a proposal for adaptation. Subsequently, a long-range curricular review process will begin to adapt our curriculum to current conditions.

Another especially important challenge is the expansion of our enrollment in correspondence with the new physical capacities, without implying a drop in the quality of our students. This makes it necessary to significantly improve our processes for recruiting new students and retaining students who have entered the institution. At the same time, this forces us to develop a culture of attention to the student that, to say it as it is, many of us have not yet developed. And, finally, that entails the need to contribute more and more to the personal and professional development of our professors, researchers and researchers, who are a backbone of our mission and a source of pride for the institution.

Finally, I want to make a brief aside at this time of celebration to refer to the recent departure of several members of our community. We know that the binomial of birth and death is a rule of nature that we cannot escape. However, the recent departure of several contributors, professors or past professors, several of them in the prime of their youth, has been a hard blow, a brutal push that has shaken our strength. Personally, I have taken each case as a reminder of the need to contribute with all our strength, as long as we have the opportunity to do so. That is why on this anniversary day, so special for Intecians, I pay tribute to our colleagues who have left us this year, wishing with all my heart that their transit through INTEC will be a source of inspiration for all of us. And in honor of them, I request a moment of silence from you.

Thank you very much.