Professor Henry Salinas, chemical engineer from the Technical University of Ambatos in the province of Tunguragua, Ecuador is in Cuba. The reason he is visiting Havana these days is because he's doing a postgraduate course at the CUJAE. We asked the professor why he chose Cuba and to tell us about the course.
"I've chosen Cuba for numerous reasons, the language, the relative nearness between Ecuador and Cuba and the variety of academic agreement signed between our countries in terms of recognition of titles that can be complicated when another country does not have certain conventions and because of affinity with the people of Cuba.
" These courses are developed with the guidance of the mentors that design the program over a period of time. We planned the course for a duration of three years and we have set goals in that time-frame. I have to make regular visits to Cuba, at least once a year, and we will be reviewing the progress, what has been done and what needs to be corrected while establishing the needs for subsequent visits."
Cuba, as you know, is going through a period of transformations. What's your opinion on this subject and specially on the use of new technologies in Cuba?
"Since my last visit I've been able to see the use of new technologies by the population but not only in activities that have to do with cell phones, chatting and what young people usually do but rather technology incorporated into the people's daily lives. On the issue of the self-employment, this is an idea that has been relatively successful and is being promoted more giving a new dynamism to the Cuban economy. I think this is the beginning and it will be a long process that will bring things that will work well and others that will need to be perfected or changed but it's all part of the process which is just beginning."
The Pope will be visiting us very soon but he also recently visited Ecuador. What's your opinion about the decision to visit Latin America and the statements he made during his previous visits?
"The Pope visited Ecuador a few weeks ago. That gesture was very much needed among the believers. We must remember that the biggest Catholic population in the world is in Latin America and yet the Church's elite has mainly been Europeans. I see the gestures of the Pope being quite positive."
And what's your opinion about the Pope's visits to our country?"
"There are parts of society that are very excited about the Popes visit. It's something that doesn't happen everyday. It's also an opportunity for people to get in touch with their spirituality."
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