The meeting's primary objective is to strengthen the joint path of IUS America with reference to the agreements and guidelines of the VII IUS General Assembly held in Rome in July 2016.
The IUS General Coordinator, Fr Marcelo Farfán, of the Youth Ministry Dicastery, declared that "we are gathered here as representatives of 23 institutions of higher education of different categories, and we are meeting to evaluate together the work we are doing."
Accompanying Fr Farfán on opening day were also the Coordinator of IUS America, Mr Mario Olmos, SDB, the Grand Chancellor of the UCSH, the Superior of the Chilean Province, Fr Alberto Lorenzelli, and the UCSH Rector, prof. Jorge Baeza.
"The IUS in America have defined various areas of work that shall be evaluated and discussed, together with the policies and initiatives to be introduced in our work."
"The IUS in America have reflected on the ministry in universities," he continued, "and studied the formative aspects offered to higher education students. On this occasion we will share the good practices of the institutions, the experiences from different fields of teaching and research, publications and quality management in the institutions' administrative and academic spheres."
The IUS represented are from 8 countries from the American continent: Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico and Chile.
Globally, IUS is made up of a network of 80 institutions whose values are rooted in the Don Bosco Preventive System.
In Chile, the first Salesian institution of higher education was established in 1982 as the Institute of Higher Studies "Blas Cañas" (IPES Blas Cañas), which later became the present "Silva Henríquez" Catholic University.
A photo gallery of the conference is available here.