November 7, 2018. From October 29 to November 1, Isabel Gutiérrez, Dean of the Graduate School of CATIE (Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center), met with different members of important institutions from the public, academic and private sectors of the Dominican Republic.
Among them, the Directorate of Multilateral Cooperation of the Ministry of Economy, Planning and Development (DIGECOOM, its Spanish acronym), the Ministry of Higher Education, Science and Technology (MESCYT, its Spanish acronym), the Ministry of Agriculture of the Dominican Republic, the members of the Board of Deans and Agri-food and Forestry Schools from different universities, the Technological Institute of Santo Domingo (INTEC, its Spanish acronym) and the APEC Foundation for Educational Credit (FUNDAPEC).
During these meetings, the Dean was accompanied by Alfredo J. Mena, representative of CATIE in the Dominican Republic, issues and opportunities for mutual cooperation between the different institutions and CATIE were discussed.
The first meeting took place at the office of Narciso Reyes, Vice-Minister of International Cooperation of the MESCYT, in order to follow up on the framework and specific agreements previously negotiated between Muhammad Ibrahim, Director General of CATIE, and Alejandrina Germán, Minister of MESCYT.
The specific agreement includes providing scholarships at CATIE for a minimum of 30 students for the next two years, the call for students is valid for the 2019 cycle," said Gutiérrez.
The second meeting was held in the office of Antonio Vargas, director of DIGECOOM, in which issues of cooperation and commitment between CATIE and the Directorate were followed up through from different sectors, public, private and academic.
The third meeting was held on the television channel, Color Visión, where a program called “Hablemos de Desarrollo” (Lets talk about Development) was recorded. Through this media, the Dean spoke about educational development issues and also extensively explained CATIE's academic offerings and the institution's commitment to assist and contribute to the Dominican Republic in the formation of human resources through master's degrees, courses and diplomas.
The fourth visit took place at the Ministry of Agriculture with Sofia Ortiz Mendoza, director of the Department of International Cooperation of the Ministry of Agriculture, and with Juan Jose Espinal, vice-minister of Sectoral Cooperation of the Ministry of Agriculture.
This ministry will also be responsible for providing scholarships to Dominican students. During this visit, it was agreed to close the call for scholarships and to coordinate the evaluation of applications, with the objective of pre-selecting 10 of the best candidates so that they can join CATIE in January 2019.
The fifth meeting was the participation at the Technological Institute of Santo Domingo (INTEC, its Spanish acronym), in the ITree seminar, in which the space was used to promote the academic offer of CATIE to all those present and to contact three very distinguished graduates in the Dominican Republic: Josefina Espaillat, professor and consultant; Solhanlle Bonilla, researcher and professor at INTEC; and Víctor Gómez, vice-rector of research at INTEC.
One of the last meetings was with Regla Brito, executive director of FUNDAPEC, and with Libby Fernández, in charge of International Cooperation of the foundation, to follow up on the agreement signed between this organization and CATIE, which aims to offer educational credits to Dominican students.
"It was agreed to promote CATIE's academic offer on FUNDAPEC's website, as well as to promote the credit mechanism offered by the foundation on CATIE's website," said Mena.
Finally, the last meeting was with the members of the Board of Deans and Directors of Agri-food and Forestry Schools from 10 universities in the Dominican Republic. This meeting was chaired by Francisco Sanchis, Dean of the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources of the Pedro Henríquez Ureña National University (UNPHU its Spanish acronym).
Gutiérrez commented that the objective of this meeting was to promote master's degrees, offer courses and diplomas, identify research projects and seek alliances to present to donors.
After these visits, the educational relations between CATIE and key institutions in the Dominican Republic were concretized and strengthened, and the academic offer of the Center was made known.
Alfredo J. Mena,
Representative of CATIE in the Dominican Republic
Priscilla Brenes Angulo
Information Technology and Communication