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Higher Education News from the Collegiate Way

These news items about residential colleges and the renewal of university life are posted for readers of the Collegiate Way website. To receive an occasional digest of this news please add your name to the monthly Collegiate Way mailing list.

A Residential College for the University of Monterrey

[The residential college at the University of Monterrey] — The first university in Latin America to establish a residential college system was the Universidad de las Américas in Puebla, Mexico, and now I’m pleased to report that this past semester UDLA was joined by its neighbor UDEM—the Universidad de Monterrey. Alicia Canton of UDEM has kindly sent me the following press release on the opening of UDEM’s first residential college. Congratulations to everyone at Monterrey for this wonderful work!

UDEM opens its first residential college in Monterrey, Mexico

The University of Monterrey (UDEM) became the first and only institution of higher education in northern Mexico to offer its students the option to live in a residential college: Residencias UDEM, a place to live and learn through living together in a community and the daily practice of the values that UDEM promotes among its members.

With the inauguration of its residences on September 8th, UDEM now forms part of a select group of Latin American universities that offer their students on-campus residence life. Only three Mexican universities have on-campus residences. From them, both UDEM and Universidad de las Américas, in the central area of Mexico, offer the model of residential colleges, but what distinguishes Residencias UDEM is the educational model of UDEM, which is unique and the first of its kind in Latin America. Its residences are therefore a center of artistic, athletic, social, civic, political, and spiritual activities.

In the design of the model of its residential college, the University of Monterrey pursued three objectives: that the students have all the means at their disposal to achieve personal growth, become an integral part of a community, and attain academic success.

UDEM is thus advancing to become a world-class university, and proof of this was the presence of directors from Harvard University, Yale University, and Loyola University of Chicago during the opening ceremony. They greatly enriched the festivities with their participation in a panel discussion on residence life, in which they shared their experiences.

The guests were: from Harvard University: John Ellison, Assistant Dean of Harvard College and Secretary of the Administrative Board; from Yale University: Betty Trachtenberg, Dean of Student Affairs; John R. Mangan, Assistant Dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences; and Ann Kuhlman, Director of the Office of International Students and Scholars; and from Loyola University of Chicago: Warren Hale, Director of Residence Life; Brian Johnson, Assistant Director of Residence Life / Facilities & Operations; and Fernando Gil, director of the residential college “José Gaos” of Universidad de las Américas (UDLA).

For the University of Monterrey, which celebrated at the same time its 37th anniversary, the new residential college marks a turning point in its history, because its university life has been greatly impacted and transformed by the intense activities of the students living on campus.

The architectural concept was done by Hanbury Evans Wright Vlattas + Company, a leading firm which has built more than 80 residential colleges around the world. The result is a complex of two buildings with a capacity to house 450 students, a chapel, and a central building with general services such as a computer center, a gymnasium, and laundries.

Founded in 1969 and accredited in the United States by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), UDEM is a private institution of higher education of Catholic inspiration and a pioneer in holistic education. It is well-known in Mexico for its unique model of humanistic education of excellence and enjoys great prestige due to its high academic standards.

UDEM is located in Monterrey, the capital of the State of Nuevo Leon, in northern Mexico. Monterrey is a city of four million inhabitants and is Mexico’s main center for financial transactions and industrial operations.

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