Mr. José Luis Mendoza Pérez. President of the University Foundation San Antonio
According to the words that His Holiness Pope John Paul II said in his Apostolic Constitution entitled "Ex Corde Ecclesiae" on August 15, 1990, reminding the bishops of their particular responsibility to promote Catholic universities and aware of the importance of the presence of Christians in university and cultural life of our time, especially towards the Third Millennium, the initiative of the University Foundation San Antonio is set up in Murcia in order to promote the creation and operation of the UCAM.
In response to this call of the Church, the first Catholic University was born, promoted and founded by lay people, with the Diocesan Bishop’s consent and canonically erected in accordance with the Article 3.3. of the Holy Father's Apostolic Constitution. The Catholic University San Antonio (UCAM) aims to institutionally guarantee the presence of Christians with evangelizing and teaching vocation in the university, scientific and cultural life of our time, with the purpose of providing a valid instrument to respond from Faith to major problems and issues of contemporary society,
with strong Christian support and contributing to development and cultural, social and human progress. It also aims to collaborate with the Church, custodian of the Truth revealed by Jesus Christ, in its evangelizing mission by bringing the Glad Tidings and leading man to true freedom.
The Ideology of the Catholic University is based on the loyalty and commitment to Gospel principles and the teaching authority of the Magisterium of the Church. We maintain a commitment of fidelity and loyalty to His Holiness the Pope, especially with regard to Faith and Morals, in close communion with the Bishop of the Diocese and in the context of the noble human effort to research, discover the Truth and disseminate lifestyles and attitudes of service by means of knowledge transfer.
As an essential part of its identity, the UCAM has made an unwavering commitment to quality of the whole university, professors, administration and services staff and governing bodies in particular. For this purpose, the UCAM has developed a quality management system applied to teaching, research and services, to ensure both the excellence of professional work and the improvement of human relations among all members of the university community in order to make education and research more effective and deeper.
With the aim of effectively satisfying the demands of our social and business environment, the UCAM offers an important catalogue of Official Degrees of first, second and third cycle, paying particular attention to our unaccredited degrees and Professional Specialization Schools with the purpose of improving the skills of graduates, adapting to new technologies and changes in the information society and communication. In this sense we keep a close collaboration with different schools, professional associations and the business world at national and international level.
One of the key characteristics of the UCAM is its teaching methodology, based on individualized instruction and organization of teaching in small groups, which facilitates an effective teacher-student relationship, a continuous performance assessment, a specific evaluation of students’ work and teamwork; this system encourages attendance and makes it possible to better monitor academic and personal student’s performance, with tutorial support sessions if necessary.
Doing internships in companies is also relevant for the UCAM and, above all, an adequate preparation for professional life, helping young students successfully face their challenges and responsibilities in their workplace, from the professional, ethical and moral point of view.
The individual and interdisciplinary promotion and development of research is another of the main objectives of the UCAM. Research is a fundamental aspect for the professors of the University. All University activities will be linked and harmonized with the evangelizing mission of the Church. Therefore, research should be respectful to the Magisterium and the Creed of the Catholic Church and it will be oriented towards the integration of knowledge, caring for the dialogue between Faith and Reason, with particular involvement of moral and ethical values and with the invaluable perspective of theology. We aim to particularly promote the theological and philosophical research, creating a centre of culture and Christian thought from the Christian Faith to help provide answers to enigmas and mysteries of human existence and the transcendent meaning of life.
For this purpose, we attach particular importance to the areas of anthropology, theology, social doctrine, ethics, philosophy and humanities and we hope to develop them in depth.
Finally, as main cause for the birth of the UCAM, we give particular importance to the evangelization of the University, mainly carried out by the chaplaincy and through the Department of Human and Religious Studies, promoting pastoral care and Christian and moral values of all members of the university community, under the guidance of the Bishop of the Diocese and Great Chancellor of the Catholic University.
As a conclusion of this presentation, I sincerely hope that God grants us his generous grace and blessing to all those who are part of the UCAM community and all those who support us with their invaluable help and their prayers so that the Catholic University San Antonio, under the protection of the Virgin Mary, is an important centre of irradiation of faith and culture in which a true Christian, human and professional training, and the encounter with the Risen Christ, Way, Truth and Life is offered.