This week His Majesty King Don Felipe of Spain participated in the opening ceremonies of the 2018 International Meeting of University Rectors at the University of Salamanca. Now in its fourth edition, the two-day event began yesterday with more than 700 rectors, academic representatives and personalities from the fields of business, politics and international institutions from 26 countries coming together to debate and discuss the keys of the university as an institution, it’s present and future.
Arriving at the Palace of Congresses and Exhibitions of Castilla y León, His Majesty was received by the President of the Portuguese Republic, His Excellency Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa. The two proceeded into the auditorium where the days events began with a light show on the “Sky of Salamanca”. This was followed by introductory remarks from the president of the Junta de Castilla y León; the rector of the University of Buenos Aires; the Secretary General of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development; the president of Banco Santander and of His Excellency Mr Rebelo.
The King also delivered a speech which focused on the fact that university is synonymous with universality and “in a globalized world it is more important than ever to open the frontiers of knowledge, share experiences and share values as un-renounceable as those promoted by the University”. He continued:
“In this meeting universities from almost thirty countries are present, most of the Ibero-American educational space but also with a relevant presence of European institutions. In their hands they have the responsibility to contribute to leading the future, knowing how to perceive and anticipate the demands of society to offer appropriate proposals, creating open and attractive spaces to which our citizens can join and be part of.”
Following the opening ceremonies His Majesty and the other leaders moved to the Junior School to learn more about the work of University of Salamanca Professor of Art History Eduardo Azofra.
The 2018 International Meeting of University Rectors follows symposiums in Rio de Janeiro (2014), Guadalajara (2010) and Seville (2005). The meetings are made possible through the support of the Banco Santander company. Banco has more than 1,200 collaboration agreements with universities and academic institutions in 21 countries through Santander Universities, and with more than 1,300 Ibero-American academic institutions through Universia.