The five-year work results of the VLIR IUC Oriente program will be displayed soon in the television series that is being filmed to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Universidad de Oriente.
Through a video conference from Casa VLIR, the name by which the program's headquarters is known in this academic institution, it was possible for the Cuban and Belgian leaders to interact. In this context, the impressions of the Flemish leader of the VLIR IUC Oriente program, Dr. Hichem Sahli, regarding the contributions of the program to the UO in the framework of its 70th anniversary, were filmed.
"For us, it has been very important to contribute to the creation of new projects and the training of young researchers - explains Dr. Sahli. Another important aspect which we have been able to improve is the infrastructure in terms of ICT, as well as the infrastructure for research laboratories. These are the two main categories that have marked the value of the project for the Universidad de Oriente in the last 4 or 5 years ".
In the VLIR IUC Oriente program, more than 40 PhD students are currently being trained. At least 20 out of them will have joint degrees from the UO and the Flemish Universities in 2018. "This is the best investment for the future. It leads to highly qualified members within the teaching staff of the UO, who will complement new research horizons and teaching materials, with the new research and teaching mechanisms they have learned in Belgium. "
Dr. Hipólito Carvajal, leader of the VLIR IUC Oriente program on the Cuban side, explains that "the project stimulates training processes, because of the need of young graduates to acquire fast and deep knowledge so that in a short lapse of time they can begin to contribute to society with their knowledge".
During the filming, there was an interest in the program's contribution to the computerization processes that the UO is experiencing. "I think something we should be really proud of is the ICT infrastructure, the computational capacity of the UO, explains Dr. Hichem. The current infrastructure allows students from the two main campuses to stay connected to each other, receiving information and documents, accessing the platforms that are conducive to managing the information they need, and with computational capacity for different types of applications in sciences like Chemistry and Biology. I think this is a substantial and positive change for the UO".
DDR Producciones has participated in the creation of other series such as Ciudad Paisaje, devoted to the work of the Oficina del Conservador de la Ciudad (Office of the City Curator) in Santiago de Cuba. Alicia Brito, producer of this documentary, also points out that the filmmakers usually work on the memories of cultural events such as the Caoba Mask Theater Festival, the International Choir Festival and the Pepe Sánchez International Trova Festival.
The television series dedicated to the 70 years of the Universidad de Oriente, completed on October 10th, 2017, will show the evolution of the most relevant aspects of the academic panorama to the present, the results of research centers such as the National Center for Applied Electromagnetism (CENEA) and the center of Medical Biophysics, as well as the importance of the UO in the national and international context among other topics. The VLIR IUC Oriente program will be present in the international relations section.
"I consider myself a member of this great University, and I hope to continue to be. Belgian academics have been able to meet and love Cuba” - says Dr. Hichem Sahli. “It has been a great change for us. We have learned to work together, to move forward together, despite cultural differences. This is one of the great results of the project during these years”.
This television series that celebrates the 70th anniversary of the Universidad de Oriente was written by Dayron Chang and produced by Alicia Brito, under the direction of Daniela Anaya, and with the collaboration of Rubén Aja and Rovier Mesa in photography. The documentary will be broadcasted in the upcoming months on the Cuban television.
Translator: Lilia Sanz Gámez
“I consider myself a member of this great University, and I hope to continue being it. With the VLIR program, Belgian academics have been able to know and love Cuba", said Dr. Hichem Sahli.
Dr. Hipólito Carvajal, Cuban leader, explains that the VLIR IUC Oriente program works on such important areas as the environment, biotechnology, natural products, heritage as a transversal axis in the dynamics of Cuban society, as well as the basic sciences for innovation and others. Photos: Daylenis Blanco