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The UNAM strike, UDLA

     Ed Simmen reports on the Mexican university situation. UNAM students are transferring to private universities, among them UDLA. Ed says:
     As part of the takeover of UNAM by a small group of dissidents, all the students records were sealed off. If a student wished to study at another institution, he would be unable to because he did not have the proper documentation for revision and revalidation. But the UDLA took a different approach to the matter. Students from the UNAM began arriving during the summer to inquire as to the possibility of transferring here. Each one was given interviews with the appropriate department chair and senior professors. Likewise, each one gave information on the courses he/she had taken and the grades received. With that, the student was accepted provisionally until the official transcript was received and the courses taken at the UNAM can be revalidated. As a result, the UDLA has between 50 and 60 of the best students from the National University. I, in particular, was fortunate enough to have one of those students in math enroll in my advanced Technical Writing course. He is absolutely brilliant. I spoke with him about this yesterday. He has no plans of ever returning to the UNAM. He also said that several of his friends plan to enroll here for the Spring semester. When will the "strike" end? That is anyone's guess. But the damage to higher education in Mexico is irreparable. Tragic indeed.

Ronald Hilton - 10/16/99