WENR, March 2010: Americas

It’s a real pity that the latest world news about mexican educational system has not been the exception in being impregnated by the whole wave of violence that lately hast struck Juárez City, Chihuahua, in that border and northern state of Mexico. Regretably, this is the truth. I hope we can be able soon as a society to put a stop to this and to focus our human capacities in the wonderful abilities we can deploy as human beings as in arts, sciences, techniques, which are at the core of education abroad. FFM.


Cross-Border Studies Shuttered Due to Violence

The University of Texas at El Paso has suspended activities in neighboring Juárez as drug-related violence in the Mexican border town escalates. The University of Texas planned the new campus for its M.B.A programs with cross-border traffic in mind, building it just a mile from Mexico. But over the past year, escalating drug-related violence in El Paso’s sister city, Ciudad Juárez, has forced the university to suspend sponsored activities across the Rio Grande, including business-school exchanges.

And while students at the new downtown center will continue to study international business, they will mingle with their Mexican counterparts mainly over the internet, or on their home turf in El Paso.

“The violence across the border has had a devastating impact on us,” says Diana S. Natalicio, who joined the faculty in 1971 and has served as El Paso’s president since 1988. The violence directly across the border stems from a battle between the rival Juárez and Sinaloa drug cartels that has transformed a former tourist town into one of the most dangerous cities in the world. Last year alone, 2,600 people were murdered in Juárez, a city of 1.4 million people, after more than 1,600 killings in 2008.

The business school isn’t the only part of the university being affected. Teacher-education programs can no longer send students to assist in Mexican schools, while students in health fields, such as nursing and health promotion, cannot practice their skills in clinics across the border. All have been deferred until further notice. The loss is felt deeply at a university where nearly 75 percent of the students are Hispanic, and up to a quarter of the students in some programs are Mexican citizens. To make up for all but banning sponsored travel anywhere in Mexico, El Paso has stepped up partnerships and programs in South America and Asia.

Other border universities, including the University of Texas at Brownsville and the University of Texas-Pan American, in Edinburg, have similarly become more cautious about approving study in Mexico.

vía WENR, March 2010: Americas.


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