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The University or UH was established on September 21, 1721 and is the oldest university in Cuba and one of the first to be founded in the Americas. Its language of instruction is Spanish. It was first called "Real y Pontificia Universidad de San Gerónimo de la Habana." Universities in those days needed a Royal or Papal authorization in order to be created, hence the "real" and "pontificia." The two men who gave that authorization were Pope Innocent XIII and King Philip V of Spain.
The university of Havana changed its status to become a secular, royal and literary institution in 1842. Its name became "Real y Literaria Universidad de la Habana," and later on, at the time of the Republicans, the name was changed to "Universidad Nacional." First established in San Juan de Letrán located in Villa de San Cristóbal in Old Havana, the university was transferred on May 1, 1902 to a hill in the Vedado district of the city.
The interior of the building was decorated by Armando Menocal y Menocal. The University is made up of 15 faculties and 14 research centers in different fields such as economics, science, social sciences and humanities. Up to 25 specialties in total are taught at the university.
The University's Faculty of Foreign Languages has 19 years of experience in Spanish teaching as second language. Havana has always been an attractive location, the University is situated in Vedado district, the main cultural area of the city. Vedado is about a 30 minutes walk or a ten minutes taxi ride from the city center. The University also offers a three week program with all courses taught by native Cubans.
New York University offers the students the opportunity to study and stay in Havana, legally off-limits to American tourists. The courses are intented for students with highly developed Spanish skills, who are at ease with lectures conducted in that language. The NYU is fully licensed under the US Department of the Treasury (OFAC) to operate an academic program in Cuba.
Rememberance of the Student Revolt against Dictator Batista
Immediately following the revolution in 1959, a literacy program was launched. Cuba has gone on to build a strong educational system from that beginning. A 1998 UNESCO study of primary education in Latin America found that: "Cuba far and away led the region in third- and fourth-grade mathematics and language achievement." Today Cuba boasts one primary school teacher per twenty students and one junior high school teacher per fifteen students, making possible a very individualized pedagogy.
One discipline in which Cuba is highly developed is Medicine. And now through its Latin American School of Medicine, Cuba gives free medical educations to thousands of poor youth from elsewhere in Latin America, Africa and even the US, with the sole stipulation that graduates return to those poor areas to practice medicine for the people. Cuba's medical education teaches not only the science and art of medicine, but also the social values of service to community.
IMPORTANT NOTE FOR STUDENTS
We receive requests for detailed information about Cuban education, the courses, cost of stay, special visa etc. We apologize, all this information is subjet to changes and regulations.
Contact the Cuban Embassy in your country for the latest information about courses at the University of Havana. Note, that a special student visa is needed, that you have to attend the courses (it's no vacation) and last but not least a good basic knowledge of the Spanish language is needed, the majority of the courses is given in Spanish.
you can email Havana University dpg at uh.cu
eventos (at) rect.uh.cu
Instituto superior de Ciencias Medicas de la Habana: http://www.ucmh.sld.cu
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