Dear colleagues, staff and students of the Universidad de Talca:
Our University community has decided supremely and democratically to elect me as the new President of the University. I give thanks from the bottom of my heart for the support and for the countless signs of appreciation and good wishes I received. I begin my task convinced of the strength and solidity of the work displayed for years on the part of our community, which has made possible to project ourselves beyond our own borders.
I assume this challenge with humility and strength, ready to deliver the best of my abilities in the effort to achieve, decidedly, the role of national leadership that our University deserves. I take this opportunity to sincerely thank Professor Juan Antonio Rock Tarud, and his team, his dedication and effort towards the institutional progress.
Today begins a new era for the Universidad de Talca. A new opportunity to engage the best of ourselves to the growth and development of our beloved institution. During the next four years we will walk together to face new and complex challenges. This demands from us a solid unity, a look of consensus about our future and to restore the climate of trust and affection that the University as a whole requires for its healthy coexistence.
There is no doubt that our immediate job will be mediated by emergency. What we experience as families and as a community on last February the 27th is a deep trauma whose traces will take several years to overcome. This hard blow, which our Region felt with particular rigor, has also allowed us to internalize in our hearts the deeper meaning of solidarity, will and the strength to stand up.
Higher education has evolved, as also we have. Our recent history holds us, the successes achieved in the more diverse levels. Our institution is recognized nationally and internationally. But this requires from us an additional effort to regain our position of "Reference University" to many others.
We have been able to develop a proactive attitude based on innovation and change, building a better future, wrought with humanity, care and dedication in every moment. Technological advances are a new instrument in the knowledge society, but it is us who are responsible of ensuring that our dedication keeps solidarity as a backdrop.
"To live is to deepen traces" points out Thomas Mann. I invite you to do precisely this, to work together on the traces that will mark not only the future of our University, but the legacy that we will give to our young people, to each of us, to our beloved city of Talca and to our nation. The whole of Chile will be witness to how the Universidad de Talca, located in the most devastated city, will be able - with the contribution of each one of you – to become the symbol of the Chile that rises.
Dear colleagues, staff and students, we are at a historical moment. I invite you to open the doors of our classrooms, to open the windows of the University faculty to let in the light of wisdom and the warmth of the sun of hope. But above all I invite you to be the soul of the University, to get immersed in the spirit of the University.
My very cordial regards.
ALVARO ROJAS MARIN