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Formation for the benefit of personnel of the University of Porto Alegre

13/07/2007: Brazil

The Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul, located in Porto Alegre, run by the Marist Brothers, organised in June some institutional formation days for one hundred and fifty lecturers and administration personnel. This initiative is part of a general programme of ongoing formation. It was an opportunity to study and discuss different themes and their relationship with the identity of a Catholic university and with spirituality and the Marist educational mission.

The union and enthusiasm felt by all the participants was very favourable to the creation of a collective ambiance in the phase of “seeing”, first stage of the Reflections Project, 2007 edition. The participants in this activity had the opportunity to pose questions to the rector, Joachim Clotet, and to all the vice-rectors throughout the morning in order to clarify doubts and to propose suggestions that were listened to by the moderators of the plenary meeting entitled “Dialogue with the rectors”. At the moment of closure, the evaluation reflected a feeling of general satisfaction in what had been experienced and learnt.

On Saturday, the programme was centred on the history and characteristics of Marist education. The conference participants treated the theme through the challenges that marked the life of Saint Marcellin Champagnat and the lifestyle of the brothers and the “Marial” style in education, based on the example of the mother of Jesus. Hames spoke of the development of catholic universities from the thirteenth century until the present and their particularities on the five continents.

The Reflections Project has been part of the management plan of the PUCRS since 2000 and of the programme of ongoing formation of lecturers and administration personnel. Its aim is to study the role that education must play in tertiary teaching, in research, in the application and community actions that require, for their good development, the competence and the commitment of all the participants. In the Project, the number of participants has risen to 1319 people who have had the opportunity to reflect and to dialogue on the Marist origins, and on the philosophy and mission of the university.

The following stages will be those of “Identity” and “Commitment”.

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