A. “The following persons (of the first graduating class in June, 1940) received Associate in Arts diplomas: Helen Scott Gilland, Mary Gilland, Pepita Garcia Colin, Mary Gisholt, Thomas Koralek, Fernando Peñalosa, Leonore Ross, and William Valverde. Those who received the Associate in Science diploma were Guillermo Ahumada, Elaine Rosslyn Gladston, Gilbert Haakh and Lavern A. Miller.
”Nine of the ten members of the faculty were also present: Henry Cain, Paul Murray, Albert Bork, Brita Bowen, José Gaos, Atlanta Cole, Montes de Oca, Dimitri Sokoloff, Jesse Vera, and Bonita Clark Wrixton.” -- Prof. Edward Simmen (UDLAP).
(Also see post # 497 at http://mx.groups.yahoo.com/group/mexicocitycollege/ for more detail on this ceremony.)
B. “The Death of Joan V. Burroughs,” by James W. Grauerholz, American Studies Dept., Univ. of Kansas, January 7, 2002:
“A strange thing—as Ed Simmen has pointed out to me—is that, in all the contemporaneous Mexico City newspaper accounts (22 stories examined, to date), there is not one single mention of Mexico City College. And yet, the killer, and one of the eyewitnesses, and the young man who came by to consider buying a pistol from Burroughs, and the boy who identified Joan's body, and the tenant in whose apartment the shooting occurred—all were currently or recently students enrolled at M.C.C. The Bounty bar was almost entirely patronized by a certain subset of M.C.C. students; the entire 122 Monterrey building was full of them.
“Just as clubby was the world of the college’s American founders, President Henry L. Cain and Dean of Faculty, Paul V. Murray. Although M.C.C.’s finances were a tremendous struggle in the early years, and Dean Murray even mortgaged his home to support the school at one point, these two men were well-connected within a middle to lower rung of the American-Mexican ‘old-boy network.’ And this, at a time when Mexico was relatively supine beneath the postwar American business invasion. Murray and Cain had power, and—thanks to their primary patrons, the Jenkins Foundation—money. If they did not want their school mentioned in newspaper accounts of a lurid, scandalous killing, it was surely within their ability to see that it did not happen. Of course, the American G.I. ‘colony’ in Colonia Roma did not usually command wide journalistic attention in DF — except when it brought out a story like this one. Perhaps the reporters were simply uninterested in the M.C.C. connection; or perhaps their editors operated at that time under a general policy of not offending the American institutions established in Mexico. If Dr. Simmen’s theory is correct, Murray or Cain must have somehow exerted influence on editors who were specifically looking to scandalize or discredit M.C.C.—and that is possible.”
http://old.lawrence.com/burroughs/deathofjoan-full.pdf. (p. 42.)
C. Robert Barlow fell ill shortly thereafter and was forced to take a leave of absence. The following year, 1951, he died.
“The 2nd edition was published in 1950 and was edited by Barlow's assistant, Leon Abrams, Jr (graduate student). Articles included works by Barrios, Horcasitas, Pedro Armillas, Eduardo Noguera, Ignacio Bernal, Patricia Fent Ross, Donald Kimmel, and Wigberto Jiménez Moreno. (Jiménez Moreno and Pedro Bosch Gimpera had founded the Dept. of Anthropology at MCC in 1947.)
“John Paddock, who first came to MCC as a graduate student in 1951 became the editor in 1952. Issue No. 3 was published in October, 1953 and was an expansion on a single theme, Excavaciones in the Mixteca Alta and consisted of reports on field work being carried on by students. The issue was written by Paddock based on materials provided by Robert Winter and Francis Guess and participating students: Tikey Magionos, Frank Moore, Robert Wiley, Lee Arnett, Arthur Parker and Herbert Nell. A graduate student from USC and Paddock provided photographs and Charles Wicke was responsible for the drawings.
“Issue No. 4 was not published until December, 1955. Tom Swinson was the editor and his assistant was Donald Brockington. Paddock was not the faculty advisor since he had joined the staff in 1953. This issue was dedicated to the excavations made at Yagul, Oaxaca and was to be the first in a series of reports of MCC's work at this site. This issue contains work by Fernando Horcasitas, Richard George, John Paddock, James Oliver, C. Chard Meigs, and others.
“The 5th edition appeared two years later in August, 1957. This issue was also edited by Swinson and Brockington and continued the emphasis on the work in Oaxaca and at Yagul primarily. Articles were by Paddock, Charles Wicke, Horcasitas, Brockington, and Irmgard W. Johnson.
“The next issue did not appear until 1965 due to the considerable turmoil at all levels of the College including changes of the president and even changes of the name of the College to the University of the Américas. Issue 6 was also very different from the previous issues in that it dealt with reviews of books published by Oscar Lewis and reviewed by John Paddock: Five Families, The Children of Sanchez, Pedro Martínez: A Mexican Peasant and His Family . The issue was to be used as a text for classes at the University. Needless to say, this was also the time when the Attorney General of Mexico accused Oscar Lewis of writing obscene literature and sent the Mexican press into an uproar.
“A double issue, No. 7 & 8, appeared the following year and returned to the original format used by Barlow. This issue was dedicated to the XI Round Table of the Sociedad Mexicana de Antropología which was held in México City in August of 1966. The great site of Teotihuacan was the special topic to be discussed. John Paddock was again editing Mesoamerican Notes, and he selected graduate thesis on Teotihuacan which had been written over the years at MCC and UDLA. Authors included Robert Chadwick, Will T. Levey, Frank Moore, and Evelyn C. Rattray. Paddock's assistants for this issue were Estelle Keller, Joseph Moger, Andrea Wakefield and Iris Hart.
“The same year, 1966, John Paddock left UDLA and became director of the Instituto de Estudios Oaxaqueños in Mitla, Oaxaca. John had also published Ancient Oaxaca.
“It was not until Fall of 1983 that the 9th edition of the journal appeared with the name, Notas Mesoamericanas. The editor was now Edward Simmen and the issue was dedicated to Dr. Wigberto Jiménez Moreno and Dr. John Paddock.”
(The brief description above by Dr. Mike Porath is based on material from the Preface of the 9th edition of Mesoamerican Notes, written by Dr. Edward Simmen. This description is included in its entirety because of the importance archaeology has played with MCC, and for the students and teachers involved.)
The first anthropology course was offered by Professor Wigberto Jiménez Moreno, September 30, 1947. The first student to register in anthropology was Walter Madson, a WW II veteran, under the G.I. Bill.9
D. The late U.S. citizen William O. Jenkins, of Puebla, MX, was “a mysterious buccaneer businessman who has built the biggest personal fortune in Mexico,” (Time, Dec 26, 1960. p.25), and established (1954) the Mary Street Jenkins Foundation, in honor of his wife, for the benefit of the Mexican people, specifically for Puebla. Jenkins “left very little of his money to his family, endowing instead the Foundation. (True to the American ideology), by 1988, the Foundation had provided more than $150 million for education, culture, health, welfare (including orphan schools) and sports through more than 300 specific grants” Of his many profitable ventures, Jenkins purchases of local banks culminated in the establishment of one of the largest banks in Latin America, the Bancomer. http://web.archive.org/web/20050308092408/http:/www.udlap.mx/~malcocer/amer.shtml
“In 1963 I calculated that the Mary Street Jenkins Foundation then bore the same ratio to the Mexican economy as did the Rockefeller Foundation to the US economy.” (Luke Case on Bill Jenkins: see http://www.dartmouth/, next link below.)
Enter the ghost of Juan Hernandez: UDLAP was first run by an ex-banker, Espinosa Igleszia. He also headed the Jenkins Foundation. In subsequent years Igleszias managed to expel members of the Jenkins from the Board of the Foundation, taking control of it and the Campus.11 Bill Jenkins countered with legal action in Federal court and “After a seven-year struggle, he regained control of the Mary Street Jenkins Foundation.” (www.dartmouth.org/classes/54/Newsletter/NL0307.htm. July, 2003). This resulted in restoring the Foundation to its original status and the Campus to the rightful academic administration. (For a brief summary of how UDLAP was later changed by President Macias Rendon, (1975-76), from a liberal arts institution into a technocratic institution to provide job training for engineers, and the decade long battle to reverse the trend, see Wilkie, ibid, p. 95.)
Nor has the small DF campus been exempt from avarice. The 91-year-old American author Russell Abbot Ames was fighting for his right to stay on disputed land in San Pablo Etla, a tiny village in the mountains above Oaxaca. He says that although he and his wife donated their 20-acre homestead to the university in 1988, they did so with the agreement that they could live there until they died. Because of a technicality (his wife died first), the DF campus attempted to immediately evict the 91-year old American, resulting in his temporary incarceration; a man who has shared so much of his good fortune with the Mexican people. (For details, see Post No. 511, at http://mx.groups.yahoo.com/group/mexicocitycollege/ )
E. UDLA-Puebla is the only institution outside the United States that has a program whereas its students serve as U.S. Congressional interns in Washington, DC, “While (then Congressman Bill Richardson and I visited in Washington, DC), I noticed the students serving as interns. I asked him if he would take a couple from the UDLAP. He said, ‘I think it is against the law.’ Yes, we found out it is. You can’t have foreigners ‘working’ in Congress because there is so much confidential material they must work with. And of course our students can’t work because they have no papers. (We say our students ‘serve’ in the office of Congressmen.) And also it is against the Mexican constitution for a Mexican to ‘work’ for a foreign government. Oh, well, we do it anyway. The students get the added benefit of meeting with the Mexican ambassador to the US while they are there. It is a marvelous and successful program. I really enjoy having initiated it. Such students!” (--Dr. Edward Simmen.9)
F. Dr. Paul V. Murray's son (Paul V. Murray, Jr., Ph.D. Education) writes, ". . . my father's idealism got in the way of making clear and difficult decisions which eventually ended his administration."
But it is such idealism which gives birth to dreams that can blossom beyond expectations. Ironically, all too often, once matured, effective maintenance and growth then requires the skills of a “non-dreamer;” such skills are usually at odds to nurturing a dream from its infancy.
G. William B. Richardson, Jr., the current Governor of New Mexico [former Congressman, and former Ambassador to the UN] and the son of William B. Richardson (former MCC Board of Trustees Chair) attended MCC as a high school student for one summer, and then attended “another school” in Mexico City. Mr. Richardson was the Commencement Speaker at the Universidad de las Américas-Puebla 2003 Graduation Ceremonies, and was awarded the Honoris Causa Degree. (See Note H, below.)
H. William Richardson, Sr., MCC Board of Trustees Chair, was forcibly removed from the board, as noted in this letter dated July 14, 1961, and sent from Frank A. Tredennick Jr to Dr. Nils Y. Wessell (who at the time was president of Tufts University. http://www.wargs.com/political/richardson.html ):
“I had a long discussion this week with Fred J. Lauerman, executive assistant to the president of Mexico City College. He reported to me that Mexico City College had made its greatest stride forward in years by forcibly deposing Bill Richardson from the board of trustees. The general feeling, however, is that the action came too late and that Richardson's leadership has been so misdirected and yet so strong that the College will probably go under in the next year or two.”
I. The Gadfly, an alternative student newspaper, was published by Peter and Lucia Montague. Only four issues were published, the last in December, 1961. “There were two bombshell stories in this last issue. First was the fact that the Michigan state university system had announced that they were no longer accepting credits from MCC, thereby ending Michigan's involvement in the ‘Winter Quarter in Mexico’ program." NOTE: The author has not been able to corroborate this story.)
The other articles involved the so called “Foot Sniffing Certificate,” which ridiculed the Dean of Men (see page 6, above), as well as the policies and personalities of the Mexican Government. This latter volley sent the Federales looking for anyone who was mentioned in The Gadfly article, most all were residents of Cuajimalpa and Contadero. No arrests were made, mainly because, by happy chance, several had already left for their ritual fun and games in Acapulco.
http://mx.groups.yahoo.com/group/mexicocitycollege/ (Post No. 1218.)
Like most “bomb throwers,” the publishers of The Gadfly left the country before the last issue was distributed.
J.¨MCC stands about 900 feet above the Valley of Mexico on a prominence known as La Angostura (the Narrow Point). This neck of land separates the ravine of Tlapecho on the north from that of Cuitlapechco on the south, the latter flanked on one side by precipitous sand cliffs called Peñablanca. These lands lie in an area known in Aztec times as the Province of Cuahuacan, and are now incorporated into the township of Santa Fe, D.F.¨ Possibly more so than any other area surrounding the Valley, this prominence “reflects the multicultural and multilingual history of the nation: this vantage point has witnessed the early semi nomadic Otomí life along with their peaceful neighbors the Matlatzinca, the great expansion of the Aztec Empire and their annual, great hunt on this prominence where the college now stands, the 16th-Century Conquest and the colonization and missionary efforts (including the extraordinary Utopian project of Santa Fe, located just below where the College now stands, undertaken by Don Vasco de Quiroga, the remarkable first bishop of Michoacán), and the wars of Independence, the witnessing of departure and arrival of many a military expedition along a three-hundred year old Indian road that passed through the area, the years of political upheaval and, finally, a successful experimental international educational institute,¨ the Mexico City College. Adapted from Fernando Horcasitas, “Cuauhtlalpan,” The Collegian, Dec. 17, 1955.
K. Between August, 1963 to Oct, 1983, a minimum of $21,450,800.00, of record, was donated to UDLA. Most of these donations went to support the move, construction, and continuing support of the Puebla campus. (Source, footnote 9, above, and Note M. below.)
1. Lilly Endownment, Inc., Indianapolis, Indiana. $45,000.00, for a Chair of Economics at the UDLA, plus $75,000.00 general grant.
2. Relm Foundation, Ann Arbor, Michigan. $4,800.00 to underwrite salary of an economics professor; plus $105,000.00 for faculty salaries.
3. Lora Lavery Stafford scholarship fund was established with the donation of $46,000.00 to the University from her estate. (The fund, however, disappeared over the years.)
4. The Scaiffe Family Foundation, Philadelphia, $250,000.00 for the Puebla campus.
5. The Gildred Family Foundation, San Diego, CA. $250,000.00.
6. The Frank B. Baird, Jr. Foundation, $75,000.00, for professors to continue research.
7. U.S. Government Agency for International Development (AID):
a. $2,000,000.00 to help build a new campus.
b. $2,000,000.00, (dependent upon bring match by $1,400,000.00).
c. $1,600,000.00 (funneled through the University of the Americas Foundation, Delware, RI, and donated as $285,923,273.74 pesos).
d. $5,000,000.00 (Dec. 17, 1971). The Foundación Jenkins (the Mary Street Jenkins Foundation?) agreed to match the grant.
e. "generous contributions" (year 2005, and beyond). See Note M, below
8. The Mary Street Foundation, Puebla, MX (see Note D, above). $5,000,000.00, plus the Puebla school of the Colegio Americano de Puebla; on going "generous contributiuoins," including "rent free" of UDLAP campus (Note M, below).
9. Richard Ware, president of the Ann Arbor, MI based Earhart Foundation, was the speaker for the first graduation ceremony (54 graduates) held on the Cholula campus. (Amount of donation, if any, unknown.)
10. Dr. Ray Lindley named Chancellor, with offices in San Antonio, TX to be in charge of planning, development and relations with U.S. foundations.
L. American Football at MCC/UDLA, by Professor Edward Simmen (UDLAP), see Citation 9, above.
“Prior to 1947, there was very little interest in having organized sports. The school had no facilities for organized sports and the enrollment was sparse. As more veterans began to arrive to study at MCC, interest in having an American football team intensified which pleased Paul Murray who felt that having a team would bring recognition to the community. Throughout the spring and summer quarters, the veterans began playing informally together. They were all former football college players.
"During the summer of 1947, MCC applied for entry and was accepted to play in the country’s Liga Mayor to play in the fall against the six other local teams in the league: the UNAM, the Instituto Politécnico, Colegio Militar, Educación, Y.M.C.A, and Wacha-chara.
"Coach Chuck LaTourette who also played, began the season with defeats by the UNAM and Politecnico. In the first game, following only one week of practice due to late arrival of players and equipment, the UNAM won 20-0. The Instituto Politecnico defeated MCC with the score of 7-0. These losses resulted from scheduling the two strongest teams for the start of the season.
"Colegio Militar was defeated 13-0. Educacion went down 13-7 in a night contest which marked the Aztecs 1st, appearance in the Olympic, and YMCA was routed 32-7 in the last conference game of the year. MCC placed third in the conference standings.
"It should be noted that with only a few exceptions, the majority of the players were veterans of World War II and were studying at MCC on the GI Bill. And of course, they were much older than the average beginning students. All of them had experience playing football at universities in the United States such as UCLA, Illinois, and the University of California before entering the service. Among the players were Joe Roldan, Jack Smith, Pop Muldoon, Bud Fellows, Dick Ehrhardt, Nick Lococo, Seymour Barkowitz, Vic Hancock and Eddie Armador.
"One of the most outstanding player was Morris “Moe” Williams, from Alabama. 'Moe' was the only Negro on the team, a factor that would cause an unexpected problem as the 1947 season came to an end and MCC ventured out of Mexico City to play two postseason games.
"For the first post season game, the team, accompanied by Paul Murray, ventured to Monterrey to play the ITESM. The Aztecs overwhelmed the Tecnologico 33-7.
"Then the team continued on to San Antonio to play Trinity University. When they arrived in the Alamo City, Dean Murray was shocked to discover that the State of Texas had laws that prevented Negroes playing on the same field as whites. But he was determined that his one Negro player, 'Moe' Williams was not going to be deprived of playing in the game simply because Williams was not white. After some thought, he came up with a plan.
"First, he had the team suit up at the hotel. Then, they went by chartered bus to the stadium. All the players wore their helmets so as to help disguise 'Moe' and raced into the dressing room and then on to the field. 'Moe' wore his helmet the entire game, removing it only in the dressing room during halftime.
"As part of Murray’s plan to hide the fact that 'Moe' was a Negro, Murray had the Alabama native listed in the program as being a Mexican from Mexico City. But that simply added to a greater problem. Considering that San Antonio had a large Mexican and Mexican-American population, there would be many of them who would go to the game to see Mexico City College play. Both Murray and 'Moe' worried, “What if someone speaks to 'Moe' in Spanish?” 'Moe' had been in Mexico a short period of time. What Spanish he had was rudimentary to say the least. So it was decided that the entire team would protect 'Moe' from everyone. He spent the entire game not only wearing the helmet but remaining absolutely silent.
"Aside from all of that, the game was a total disaster for the Aztecs of MCC. Trinity University ran rampant over MCC by a score of 73 to 6.
" Nevertheless, one person found solace in the midst of such a devastating defeat. A writer for the 1948 yearbook noted, 'The Trinity game was the first time a Negro—Williams—played among whites on a Texas gridiron.' The Aztecs may have been crushed on the field, but 'Anyway we made history.' "
"The season did not end there for two of the Aztec Warriors: 'Moe' Williams and Bud Fellows. They were both selected to play with the Mexican All-Stars against the Randolph Field Air Force Base team in the 'Silver Bowl' in Mexico City before a crowd of 35,000 spectators, the largest crowd in local football history. With the great help of Williams and fellows, the Mexican All-Stars surprised the Randolph Field team by defeating them 24-21.
"With John D. Engman as Coach, the Aztecas won the national America-Football championship by defeating the Pumas of the UNAM 32-26 in what was reported to be one of the most exciting games in the history of American-football in Mexico by. Among the outstanding players for the Aztecs was Morris 'Moe' Williams.
"Between 1947 and 1954, American-Football was MCC’s only intercollegiate sport. Strong rivalries were built up with the teams from UNAM and the Politecnico. Then President Murray withdrew the team from the 'Liga Mayor' prior to the beginning of the 1955 season. He noted, 'Local conditions would have to change greatly before the college would consider re-entry into the league.'
“ ' Moe' Williams was graduated from MCC in 1950. But he did not leave Mexico. Rather, he opened a travel agency catering to American tourists. However, he remained close to MCC and President Murray.
"In 1955, MCC fielded a softball team, playing in the Inter-Club Softball league and finishing in second place. In 1956, the team entered the new “Liga Mayor” Softball League and promptly won the championship.
"At the same time, MCC played basketball as an intramural sport. By 1958, MCC’s basketball team entered that sport’s 'Liga Mayor'. The individual who volunteered to coach the team without renumeration was none other than 'Moe' Williams. He remained coach until he was forced by illness to resign in 1990. He died the following year.
"In 1962, Dr. D. Ray Lindley became the third president of MCC, promising to restore American football at the intercollegiate level. This did not happen. However, he did continue to support basketball team, keeping Williams as coach.
"UDLA has won numerous national championships after its move to Puebla. Basketball players were recruited from the United States. Of course they were all very tall and towered over the average Mexican players on other teams. That led to the national authorities passing a law that there could be only one foreign basketball player on the court at one time.” — Professor Edward Simmen (UDLAP)
M. President's Report Summary* by Dr. Nora Lustig President of the Universidad de las Americas, Puebla, September 28, 2001-May 16,2005 (December 2005)
( A Spanish version was read at the meeting of UDLA's Board of Advisors on December 9,2005. )
In "Looking to the Future", my inaugural address as President of UDLA on September 28, 2001, I noted that the University of the Americas, Puebla, is one of the most prestigious private universities in Mexico and is internationally recognized as such." As President, I strove to continue and consolidate this achievement, keeping in mind our shared long-term goal of turning UDLA into one of the top ranked institutions of higher education in Latin America.
Why were we determined to set such an ambitious goal?
Thousands of students have very high hopes and are eager to further their education. I firmly believe that our youth deserve access to the top quality education in their own country. To provide them with the appropriate professional skills necessary to access the opportunities in the global economy should be our foremost priority. It was this vision that led me to leave Washington, D.C., and to assume the duties and challenges of being President of UDLA in 2001.As the head of such a prestigious institution, I also de sired to in spire young women top lace themselves as leaders in areas long regarded as off-limits to women professionals and teachers.
Before joining UDLA, I analyzed the best U.S. universities and I found they have five distinct qualities:
(i) a well defined and shared vision,
(ii) an atmosphere of freedom and adequate incentives,
(iii) a commitment to quality and honesty,
(iv) a strong capacity to attract external support, and of course
(v) a bit of good luck.
Luck is the only factor that does not depend on our efforts. Everything else does: vision can be developed, incentives can be devised, a commitment to quality and honesty can be practiced and philanthropy can be encouraged. With the benefit of hindsight, I would like to add another crucial element: the main goal of a University's governing board must be to fully and systematically protect the long-term interests of the institution.
Top-tier universities evaluate their faculty by their performance in research, publications and patent applications; not by the time spent at their place of work. Furthermore, facility at top-ranking universities enjoy freedom to choose their own projects and to work with well-qualified graduate students. Top universities also use financial aid to attract the best students and to support talented students who otherwise could not afford to attend. Leading institutions also make room for the participation of the communities who live in the surrounding neighborhood. Finally, outstanding institutions enjoy sound and honest governance based on clear and explicit norms and regulations. Sound governance is necessary to encourage donors, alumni and board members to be more generous with their time and resources. Solid administration strives for the efficiency and flexibility that universities need to adapt and survive in a competitive global environment.
I. Main Initiatives during my 2001-2005 term
During my four years as President of UDLA, my office in conjunction with the Academic Council and various ad hoc committees implemented a series of initiatives and reforms aimed at making UDLA a world class University.
I believe our salient accomplishments were:
1. Enhancing academic excellence and the quality of UDLA's faculty and students
|• The hiring procedure for full-time professors was reformed to ensure that candidates were subject to an international selection procedure, as is customary in the best universities in the world.
• Department-level faculty evaluation methods were re-designed to stress quality over quantity, as well as to include activities that had not received recognition previously.
• The student-generated faculty evaluation process was modified to better assess the quality of teaching.
• Course content and program curricula were reformed and updated to promote academic excellence.
• A work plan to encourage critical thinking was formulated as part of a program for renewal of our SACS accreditation.
• The entrance examination system was modified, to bring it up to the standard of other outstanding local institutions.
• UDLA's scholarship program was reformed in order to attract an increasing number of outstanding students at both undergraduate and graduate level.
2. Promoting research
• Research centers in such key areas as biochemistry and public policy were created.
• The teaching load of professors who are members of the National Research System was reduced to stimulate quality research.
• The number of yearly sabbatical s lots available to full-time professors was increased from six to nine, to contribute to professional development of the faculty.
• The use of the summer term for faculty was established, enabling them to pay brief visits to other institutions, a common practice at the best universities.
• In order to maintain the most current information technology and scientific research, the platform was upgraded to state-of-the-art equipment and laboratory equipment was modernized.
3. Supporting institutional development
• To strengthen fund-raising activities, a Vice-Presidency for Institutional Development was established almost immediately after I came on board.
• To ensure access to the best opportunities worldwide, cooperation with different government agencies and numerous educational institutions in Mexico as well as abroad was actively promoted.
• Through the creation of a Regional Development Center, the University was able to integrate itself with and contribute to the development of the surrounding communities.
• To offer support to our own creative and artistic talent, and to make UDLA attractive to other artists, the Cultural Council was re-invigorated.
• The Cholula City Museum and the Franciscan Library were promoted, with the goal of attaining further integration with the surrounding community.
• To enhance social mobility, the University launched the "Cholula Scholarships" for talented local youth from poor households in the surrounding communities.
4. Strengthening governance
• A major but perhaps less visible accomplishment is the increased institutionalization of university governance. Key to the changes was the formalization of the Board of Advisors and the creation of the Audit, Finance and Investments Committee. The by-laws of both these bodies are now formally part of the FUDLAP Board of Trustees official records.
• A conflict of interest statute and a code of ethics were added to the by-laws of the Foundation Universidad de las Americas, Puebla, as well as to the by-laws of the Board of Advisors and the Auditing, Finance and Investments Committee (CAFI).
• The rent-free lease (comodato) of UDLA's campus between the Mary Street Jenkins Foundation and FUDLAP was modified to make the arrangement clearer and more secure. This was essential to have access to external funds from USAID as well as other sources.
• The participation of faculty and students at governance and decision-making levels was increased considerably through their membership in existing councils and committees and the creation of new ones.
5. Modernizing the administrative and financial operations
• To channel more resources to faculty and students, my administration made raising administrative efficiency a top priority.
• To prevent and correct accounting irregularities, we created a modem General Directorship of Auditing. In addition, a number of measures were taken to prevent administrative abuse and staff negligence.
• To eliminate duplication and wasteful processes, we took the painful but necessary decision to cut 180 non-academic posts from the administrative staff between October 1, 2001 and Apri130, 2005.
• A long term planning process that included a Strategic Plan, annual Operational Plans for each Vice-Presidency and a Physical Plant Development Plan was implemented.
• Statistics gauging institutional development were broadened and standardized to provide planning and evaluation benchmarks.
6. New buildings and renovation of facilities
• The construction and remodeling projects carried out under my administration include the Language Learning and Research Center (CAIL) which opened a few days after my departure on June 10th, 2005, one year after the foundation stone was laid. This facility was made possible by the generous contributions from the U.S. Agency for International Development, the Mary Street Jenkins Foundation and UDLA's own resources.
• Important renovations were completed on the Clinic, the Ray Lindley and Cain Murray Residential Colleges and the Center for Regional Development, among other facilities.
7. Fulfilling commitments made by the previous Administration
My administration took over a number of obligations pending from the preceding one. Deserving special mention are:
• Fulfillment of the promise of staff salary increases at rates greater than announced tuition increases to bring remunerations up to their pre-1995 crisis levels in terms of purchasing power.
• Fulfillment of the commitments to reinstate professors who had taken time off to obtain a Ph.D. in their field.
• Fulfillment of the promise to explore options for affordable faculty housing'.
With respect to this last relocation problem, it is important to thank Mr. Melquiades Morales Flores, then Governor of the State of Puebla. With his support we were able to relocate the housing project that had to be cancelled due to archeological discoveries to another site. This exchange could help VDLA recover most of the $13 million invested in the original plan and fulfill the commitment with faculty. Upon my departure, we had secured the new land and were in the process of developing the housing project.
II. Recognitions and distinctions received by UDLA
UDLA's progress in these years has received recognition from prestigious institutions. Amongst them it is worth highlighting the following.
• The School of Engineering received accreditation by CACEI (Mexican Accrediting Board of the Teaching of Engineering), the Hotel and Restaurant Management major was accredited b y C ONAET (National Bo and for the Quality 0 f Tourism Education); and Architecture by COMAEA (Mexican Accrediting Board of the Teaching of Architecture).
• UDLA was ranked the third best Mexican university by COPAES (Higher Education Accrediting Board) and CIEES (Inter-institutional Committee for the Evaluation of Higher Education) for its high academic standards; ten out of thirteen graduate programs earned recognition by CONACYT (National Council of Science and Technology), through its PIFOP program (Program for the Strengthening of Graduate Studies); Consulta Mitfosky and Transparencia Mexicana placed UDLA in third position, among various private and prestigious educational institutions.
• Amongst private institutions, UDLA has the largest percentage of faculty who are members of the National Research System.
• The dining hall was awarded an H Distinction for the quality of food served, and UDLA's re-designed web-site won the Standard of Excellence award from the Web Award Competition 2004.
• During my tenure, a most important recognition was conferred by the very positive reports of the Visiting Committee of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) that evaluated UDLA in April 2005.
The large number of awards and prizes received by faculty members and students could be added to this list and are available in the annual reports.
III. Financial report for the period January 1 to May 15, 2005
To bring spending in line with available resources, a rationalization scheme was put into effect. The results were remarkable. On December 16, 2004 the then Vice-President for Administration and Finance presented a budget that showed a three million pesos operational deficit. By February 24, 2005 a revised budget was authorized t hat showed a surplus of $43 million. T his surplus was generated mainly by reducing general outlays and non-academic honoraria and spending on academic activities was protected from cuts. As a consequence of these savings, the new budget restored faculty travel funding, bonuses for top performing administrative personnel and allowed UDLA's American football team to participate in the Major League during 2005. None of these items had been included in the initial December budget for 2005.
The financial statements through April 30, 2005, show that actual spending during the first four
months was on track with budget targets.
IV. Challenges ahead
Regardless of these achievements, we must emphasize that many important challenges still remain. One particular problem stems from a decline in the rate of growth of the student population, mainly due to demographics, who is likely to attend universities such as UDLA. Further, the rate of growth in applications to UDLA has slowed down due to a sharp increase in newly opened universities in the area during the last three years.
To address these challenges, my administration considered, inter alia, the following measures: increase the number of students by creating new academic programs that require little additional resources; rent available university facilities to external users; attract more exchange students and create continuing education programs; intensify fund-raising activities and establish the foundations for an endowment fund.
Last but no the least, UDLA's long-term consolidation as a premier institution in the world will require greater diversification of income sources to cover recurrent as well as investment costs, the creation of an endowment fund and -something very specific to UDLA -the diversification of the membership of the Board of Trustees which presently comprises mainly members of the same family.
In concluding, I wish to thank the Board of Trustees that appointed me to the Presidency of UDLA in 2001, in particular, its then President, Ms. Angeles Espinosa Iglesias, and the Board that confirmed and supported me from the end of 2002, especially Mr. Guillermo Jenkins Anstead, the President of the Board since 2002.
I would also like to thank both former and current members of the University Board of Overseers, my close co-workers -Vice-Presidents, Deans, Directors, Heads and support staff, my academic colleagues, administrative and union personnel, the alumni and their representatives, parents and, above all, the students who are the core of every academic institution. As I mentioned at the beginning, it is for the sake of the students, above all, that we are all ready to dedicate so much of our lives to strive for the highest standard of education.
I further thank all those who have approached UDLA to offer assistance, those who have given their time and resources for this purpose, the life-long friends I have met here and, obviously, my family -my husband, Antonio, my children, Carlos Javier and Liliana, and my mother, who was by my side until recently, and who continues to offer spiritual support, now that she is no longer with us.
When I took over the Presidency, it was my dream and my goal to contribute towards raising a university in Mexico to the highest international standards of excellence. I am certain that the new President, Dr. Pedro Angel Palou, shares this dream and will be doing his best to make it come true. I wish him the best of success in his endeavors. Should he find that I have made mistakes, may he correct them without hesitation; should he discover any unfinished business, may he bring them to a successful conclusion; and, should he agree with the measures and initiatives we set in motion, I hope he will count on the human and financial resources to carry them out.
Many thanks to all, from your colleague and friend,
(Editor’s Note: Fourteen Volumes of The MCC Collegian, representing 182 issues from 1947 to 1961, were among the sources accessed in the compilation of this History. The issues have been digitalized and are online at:
It is a pleasure to note that this history is, in effect, a product of the spirit of many who were eager to contribute over the years. I wish to thank Dr. Richard W. Wilkie, MCC class of ’59, Professor of Geography, University of Massachusetts-Amherst, Professor Edward Simmen, Docente-Investigador, Deptos. de Lenguas y Literatura, Universidad de las Americas, Puebla (UDLAP), and Professor Arturo Valentin Arrieta Audiffred, UDLAP Biblioteca for their generous, prompt responses to my many requests for various information, photos and clarification of points. I also wish to thank Terrence Parker, editor of the literary weekly, The Moon, for his many excellent suggestions and for proofreading of the text.
–Joseph M. Quinn. 2006
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