University of Havana
Overview
 
The University of Havana or UH (in Spanish
Spanish language
Spanish , also known as Castilian , is a Romance language in the Ibero-Romance group that evolved from several languages and dialects in central-northern Iberia around the 9th century and gradually spread with the expansion of the Kingdom of Castile into central and southern Iberia during the...

, Universidad de La Habana) is a university located in the Vedado
Vedado
Vedado is the downtown and a vibrant neighboorhood in the city of Havana, Cuba. Bordered on the east by Central Havana, and on the west by the Miramar/Playa district. The main street running east to west is Calle 23, also known as 'La Rampa'...

 district of Havana
Havana
Havana is the capital city, province, major port, and leading commercial centre of Cuba. The city proper has a population of 2.1 million inhabitants, and it spans a total of — making it the largest city in the Caribbean region, and the most populous...

, Cuba
Cuba
The Republic of Cuba is an island nation in the Caribbean. The nation of Cuba consists of the main island of Cuba, the Isla de la Juventud, and several archipelagos. Havana is the largest city in Cuba and the country's capital. Santiago de Cuba is the second largest city...

. Founded in 1728, the University of Havana is the oldest university
University
A university is an institution of higher education and research, which grants academic degrees in a variety of subjects. A university is an organisation that provides both undergraduate education and postgraduate education...

 in Cuba
Cuba
The Republic of Cuba is an island nation in the Caribbean. The nation of Cuba consists of the main island of Cuba, the Isla de la Juventud, and several archipelagos. Havana is the largest city in Cuba and the country's capital. Santiago de Cuba is the second largest city...

, and one of the first to be founded in the Americas. Originally a religious institution, today the University of Havana has 15 faculties (colleges) at its Havana campus and distance learning centers throughout Cuba.
It was first called "Real y Pontificia Universidad de San Gerónimo de la Habana" (in English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 Royal and Pontifical University of Saint Jerome of Havana).At those times, universities needed a royal or papal authorization in order to be created and thus the names Real y Pontificia.
Encyclopedia
The University of Havana or UH (in Spanish
Spanish language
Spanish , also known as Castilian , is a Romance language in the Ibero-Romance group that evolved from several languages and dialects in central-northern Iberia around the 9th century and gradually spread with the expansion of the Kingdom of Castile into central and southern Iberia during the...

, Universidad de La Habana) is a university located in the Vedado
Vedado
Vedado is the downtown and a vibrant neighboorhood in the city of Havana, Cuba. Bordered on the east by Central Havana, and on the west by the Miramar/Playa district. The main street running east to west is Calle 23, also known as 'La Rampa'...

 district of Havana
Havana
Havana is the capital city, province, major port, and leading commercial centre of Cuba. The city proper has a population of 2.1 million inhabitants, and it spans a total of — making it the largest city in the Caribbean region, and the most populous...

, Cuba
Cuba
The Republic of Cuba is an island nation in the Caribbean. The nation of Cuba consists of the main island of Cuba, the Isla de la Juventud, and several archipelagos. Havana is the largest city in Cuba and the country's capital. Santiago de Cuba is the second largest city...

. Founded in 1728, the University of Havana is the oldest university
University
A university is an institution of higher education and research, which grants academic degrees in a variety of subjects. A university is an organisation that provides both undergraduate education and postgraduate education...

 in Cuba
Cuba
The Republic of Cuba is an island nation in the Caribbean. The nation of Cuba consists of the main island of Cuba, the Isla de la Juventud, and several archipelagos. Havana is the largest city in Cuba and the country's capital. Santiago de Cuba is the second largest city...

, and one of the first to be founded in the Americas. Originally a religious institution, today the University of Havana has 15 faculties (colleges) at its Havana campus and distance learning centers throughout Cuba.

History

It was first called "Real y Pontificia Universidad de San Gerónimo de la Habana" (in English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 Royal and Pontifical University of Saint Jerome of Havana).At those times, universities needed a royal or papal authorization in order to be created and thus the names Real y Pontificia. The two men who gave that authorization to the university were Pope Innocent XIII
Pope Innocent XIII
Pope Innocent XIII was pope from 1721 until his death.He was born Michelangelo Conti in Poli, near Rome. Like Pope Innocent III , Pope Gregory IX and Pope Alexander IV , he was a member of the family of the Conti, counts and dukes of Segni...

 and King Philip V of Spain
Philip V of Spain
Philip V was King of Spain from 15 November 1700 to 15 January 1724, when he abdicated in favor of his son Louis, and from 6 September 1724, when he assumed the throne again upon his son's death, to his death.Before his reign, Philip occupied an exalted place in the royal family of France as a...

.

In 1842, the university changed its status to become a secular, royal and literary institution. Its name became Real y Literaria Universidad de La Habana (in English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

, Royal and Literary University of Havana) and later, when Cuba was a free republic, the name was changed to Universidad Nacional (in English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

, National University).

The university had first been established in San Juan de Letrán (located in Villa de San Cristóbal in Old Havana
Old Havana
Old Havana contains the core of the original city of Havana. The positions of the original Havana city walls are the modern boundaries of Old Havana....

) before it was transferred on May 1, 1902 to a hill in the Vedado
Vedado
Vedado is the downtown and a vibrant neighboorhood in the city of Havana, Cuba. Bordered on the east by Central Havana, and on the west by the Miramar/Playa district. The main street running east to west is Calle 23, also known as 'La Rampa'...

 area of Havana
Havana
Havana is the capital city, province, major port, and leading commercial centre of Cuba. The city proper has a population of 2.1 million inhabitants, and it spans a total of — making it the largest city in the Caribbean region, and the most populous...

. The interiors of the building were decorated by Armando Menocal y Menocal. The seven frescos represent Medicine
Medicine
Medicine is the science and art of healing. It encompasses a variety of health care practices evolved to maintain and restore health by the prevention and treatment of illness....

, Science
Science
Science is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge in the form of testable explanations and predictions about the universe...

, Art
Art
Art is the product or process of deliberately arranging items in a way that influences and affects one or more of the senses, emotions, and intellect....

, Thought
Thought
"Thought" generally refers to any mental or intellectual activity involving an individual's subjective consciousness. It can refer either to the act of thinking or the resulting ideas or arrangements of ideas. Similar concepts include cognition, sentience, consciousness, and imagination...

, Liberal Arts
Liberal arts
The term liberal arts refers to those subjects which in classical antiquity were considered essential for a free citizen to study. Grammar, Rhetoric and Logic were the core liberal arts. In medieval times these subjects were extended to include mathematics, geometry, music and astronomy...

, Literature
Literature
Literature is the art of written works, and is not bound to published sources...

, and Law
Law
Law is a system of rules and guidelines which are enforced through social institutions to govern behavior, wherever possible. It shapes politics, economics and society in numerous ways and serves as a social mediator of relations between people. Contract law regulates everything from buying a bus...

. At the main university entrance (shown above) there is a bronze
Bronze
Bronze is a metal alloy consisting primarily of copper, usually with tin as the main additive. It is hard and brittle, and it was particularly significant in antiquity, so much so that the Bronze Age was named after the metal...

 statue
Statue
A statue is a sculpture in the round representing a person or persons, an animal, an idea or an event, normally full-length, as opposed to a bust, and at least close to life-size, or larger...

 of Alma Mater
Alma mater
Alma mater , pronounced ), was used in ancient Rome as a title for various mother goddesses, especially Ceres or Cybele, and in Christianity for the Virgin Mary.-General term:...

 (meaning the "Nourishing mother" in Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

) that was created in 1919 by artist Mario Korbel
Mario Korbel
Mario Joseph Korbel, American sculptor born in Osik, Bohemia on March 22, 1882 to a clergyman, Joseph Korbel and his wife Katherina Dolezal Korbel. He began studying sculpture in his homeland, continuing his studies after moving to the United States at age 18...

. The model for the statue's face was lovely 16-year-old Feliciana "Chana" Villalón, the daughter of José Ramón Villalón y Sánchez, a professor of analytical mathematics at the University. Chana later married Juan Manuel Menocal (a distant relative of Armando Menocal), who went on to become the Dean of the Business School. Juan Manuel Menocal was a professor at the law school when Fidel Castro
Fidel Castro
Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz is a Cuban revolutionary and politician, having held the position of Prime Minister of Cuba from 1959 to 1976, and then President from 1976 to 2008. He also served as the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba from the party's foundation in 1961 until 2011...

 was a student there in the 1940s. The writer Maria Rosa Menocal
María Rosa Menocal
María Rosa Menocal is a Cuban-born scholar of medieval culture and history. Menocal earned a B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania...

, currently Director of the Whitney Humanities Center at Yale, is the granddaughter of Chana and Juan Manuel Menocal. (See Alma Mater Witness of Time by Eduardo Heras León).

The main library "Rubén Martínez Villena" was established later in 1936.

After the government was taken over by Fulgencio Batista
Fulgencio Batista
Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar was the United States-aligned Cuban President, dictator and military leader who served as the leader of Cuba from 1933 to 1944 and from 1952 to 1959, before being overthrown as a result of the Cuban Revolution....

 in 1952, the University became a center of anti-government protests. Batista closed the University in 1956. It opened again in 1959 upon the success of the revolution led by Fidel Castro.

Organization

The University of Havana is made up of 16 faculties and 14 research centers in different fields like economics
Economics
Economics is the social science that analyzes the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services. The term economics comes from the Ancient Greek from + , hence "rules of the house"...

, sciences, social science and humanities
Humanities
The humanities are academic disciplines that study the human condition, using methods that are primarily analytical, critical, or speculative, as distinguished from the mainly empirical approaches of the natural sciences....

. In total, up to twenty five specialties are taught at the university. Now, it has about 6000 degree students in regular classes.

There are 16 faculties into which the university is divided:
  • Natural Sciences
    • Faculty of Biology
      Biology
      Biology is a natural science concerned with the study of life and living organisms, including their structure, function, growth, origin, evolution, distribution, and taxonomy. Biology is a vast subject containing many subdivisions, topics, and disciplines...

    • Faculty of Pharmacy
      Pharmacy
      Pharmacy is the health profession that links the health sciences with the chemical sciences and it is charged with ensuring the safe and effective use of pharmaceutical drugs...

       and Foods
    • Faculty of Physics
      Physics
      Physics is a natural science that involves the study of matter and its motion through spacetime, along with related concepts such as energy and force. More broadly, it is the general analysis of nature, conducted in order to understand how the universe behaves.Physics is one of the oldest academic...

    • Faculty of Geography
      Geography
      Geography is the science that studies the lands, features, inhabitants, and phenomena of Earth. A literal translation would be "to describe or write about the Earth". The first person to use the word "geography" was Eratosthenes...

    • Faculty of Mathematics
      Mathematics
      Mathematics is the study of quantity, space, structure, and change. Mathematicians seek out patterns and formulate new conjectures. Mathematicians resolve the truth or falsity of conjectures by mathematical proofs, which are arguments sufficient to convince other mathematicians of their validity...

       and Computer Science
      Computer science
      Computer science or computing science is the study of the theoretical foundations of information and computation and of practical techniques for their implementation and application in computer systems...

    • Faculty of Psychology
      Psychology
      Psychology is the study of the mind and behavior. Its immediate goal is to understand individuals and groups by both establishing general principles and researching specific cases. For many, the ultimate goal of psychology is to benefit society...

    • Faculty of Chemistry
      Chemistry
      Chemistry is the science of matter, especially its chemical reactions, but also its composition, structure and properties. Chemistry is concerned with atoms and their interactions with other atoms, and particularly with the properties of chemical bonds....


  • Social Sciences
    Social sciences
    Social science is the field of study concerned with society. "Social science" is commonly used as an umbrella term to refer to a plurality of fields outside of the natural sciences usually exclusive of the administrative or managerial sciences...

     and Humanities
    Humanities
    The humanities are academic disciplines that study the human condition, using methods that are primarily analytical, critical, or speculative, as distinguished from the mainly empirical approaches of the natural sciences....

    • Faculty of Arts
      ARts
      aRts, which stands for analog Real time synthesizer, is an audio framework that is no longer under development. It is best known for previously being used in KDE to simulate an analog synthesizer....

       and Letters
      Literature
      Literature is the art of written works, and is not bound to published sources...

    • Faculty of Communication
      Communication
      Communication is the activity of conveying meaningful information. Communication requires a sender, a message, and an intended recipient, although the receiver need not be present or aware of the sender's intent to communicate at the time of communication; thus communication can occur across vast...

    • Faculty of Law
      Law
      Law is a system of rules and guidelines which are enforced through social institutions to govern behavior, wherever possible. It shapes politics, economics and society in numerous ways and serves as a social mediator of relations between people. Contract law regulates everything from buying a bus...

    • Faculty of Philosophy
      Philosophy
      Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental problems, such as those connected with existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language. Philosophy is distinguished from other ways of addressing such problems by its critical, generally systematic approach and its reliance on rational...

       and History
      History
      History is the discovery, collection, organization, and presentation of information about past events. History can also mean the period of time after writing was invented. Scholars who write about history are called historians...

    • Faculty of Foreign Languages

  • Economic Sciences
    • Faculty of Accounting and Finance
      Finance
      "Finance" is often defined simply as the management of money or “funds” management Modern finance, however, is a family of business activity that includes the origination, marketing, and management of cash and money surrogates through a variety of capital accounts, instruments, and markets created...

    • Faculty of Economics
      Economics
      Economics is the social science that analyzes the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services. The term economics comes from the Ancient Greek from + , hence "rules of the house"...

    • Faculty of Tourism
      Tourism
      Tourism is travel for recreational, leisure or business purposes. The World Tourism Organization defines tourists as people "traveling to and staying in places outside their usual environment for not more than one consecutive year for leisure, business and other purposes".Tourism has become a...

  • Distance Education
    Distance education
    Distance education or distance learning is a field of education that focuses on teaching methods and technology with the aim of delivering teaching, often on an individual basis, to students who are not physically present in a traditional educational setting such as a classroom...


Student organizations

Before the Cuban Revolution of 1959, students joined different organisations, aligning themselves directly or indirectly with some political party. The strongest of all these organisations was the FEU (Federación Estudiantíl Universitaria or University students federation) created by, Julio Antonio Mella
Julio Antonio Mella
Julio Antonio Mella was a founder of the "internationalized" Cuban Communist Party.Mella studied law in the University of Havana until he was expelled in 1925 and is considered a hero by the present Cuban government. Some Cubans view him as a victim of the Stalin-Trotsky struggle...

, a co-founder of the Cuban Communist Party in the 1920s. The European revolutionary tradition of college-based political activism, practised in Cuba and in many other Latin American countries and the alleged corruption of Cuban political parties at the time turned the FEU, a stronghold of communist ideology, into the most influential of Cuban political organizations before 1959. It was a major participant in the overthrowing of Cuban President Gerardo Machado
Gerardo Machado
Gerardo Machado y Morales was President of Cuba and a general of the Cuban War of Independence...

. The FEU innovated the national general strike of 1933, resulting in the imprisonment of many of its members. Founder Julio Antonio Mella
Julio Antonio Mella
Julio Antonio Mella was a founder of the "internationalized" Cuban Communist Party.Mella studied law in the University of Havana until he was expelled in 1925 and is considered a hero by the present Cuban government. Some Cubans view him as a victim of the Stalin-Trotsky struggle...

, himself had been killed at the hands of two assassins sent by Machado while exiled in Mexico in 1929

After the coup d'état by Fulgencio Batista
Fulgencio Batista
Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar was the United States-aligned Cuban President, dictator and military leader who served as the leader of Cuba from 1933 to 1944 and from 1952 to 1959, before being overthrown as a result of the Cuban Revolution....

 in 1952, when free and democratic elections were suspended, the violent clashes between university students and Cuban police reached its extremes. Students known to be members of the FEU were violently tortured and killed in the streets of Havana, and the organization reacted with an irregular war in the city, aiming mainly to assassinate police officers of high rank, like the chief of the police in Havana, Blanco Rico, who was killed by 4 FEU members. After the assault on the Moncada barracks
Moncada Barracks
The Moncada Barracks was a military barracks in Santiago de Cuba, named after General Guillermón Moncada, a hero of the War of Independence. On July 26, 1953, the barracks was the site of an armed attack by a small group of revolutionaries led by Fidel Castro. This armed attack is widely accepted...

  by Fidel Castro
Fidel Castro
Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz is a Cuban revolutionary and politician, having held the position of Prime Minister of Cuba from 1959 to 1976, and then President from 1976 to 2008. He also served as the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba from the party's foundation in 1961 until 2011...

, an attorney who graduated from Havana University School of Law, and who had contacts in the FEU, the FEU
Feu
Feu was previously the most common form of land tenure in Scotland, as conveyancing in Scots law was dominated by feudalism until the Scottish Parliament passed the Abolition of Feudal Tenure etc. Act 2000...

 became an ally of Castro's new July 26th Movement, though there were discrepancies between the leaders in the form that the forthcoming revolution should be carried out. While Fidel Castro was hiding in the Sierra Maestra
Sierra Maestra
Sierra Maestra is a mountain range that runs westward across the south of the old Oriente Province from what is now Guantánamo Province to Niquero in southeast Cuba, rising abruptly from the coast. Some view it as a series of connecting ranges , which joins with others extending to the west...

 mountains, the FEU, led by Jose Antonio Echeverria, attempted to kill Fulgencio Batista
Fulgencio Batista
Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar was the United States-aligned Cuban President, dictator and military leader who served as the leader of Cuba from 1933 to 1944 and from 1952 to 1959, before being overthrown as a result of the Cuban Revolution....

 in an armed assault at the Cuban Presidential Palace on March 13, 1957. Batista managed to escape, and many student assaultants died in the action, as did Echeverria himself. During the months that followed, the police executed many of the students that led the failed coup. President Batista ordered the university to be closed, and it remained so until Batista fled the country and Fidel Castro entered Havana in January 1959.

The Castro regime re-opened the university in 1959 and put an end to student demonstrations and political affiliations. By 1961, particularly after the Bay of Pigs invasion, public student gatherings were forbidden unless they were government sponsored. As per the information in the university's website, The student body was "purified" of all opposition to Fidel Castro.

See also

  • Eberto Escobedo Lazo
    Eberto Escobedo Lazo
    Eberto Escobedo Lazo Eberto Escobedo Lazo Eberto Escobedo Lazo (born November 1919 in (Camagüey, Cuba) is a Cuban artist known for painting and his drawings. He studied at Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes “San Alejandro”, Havana, Cuba.-Individual Exhibitions:...

  • Education in Cuba
    Education in Cuba
    Education in Cuba has been a highly ranked system for many years. The University of Havana was founded in 1727 and there are a number of other well-established colleges and universities. Following the 1959 revolution, the Castro government nationalized all educational institutions, and created a...

  • List of universities in Cuba
  • List of colonial universities in Latin America

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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