• IQS Hosts the Opening Ceremony of the 22-23 Academic Year for the URL

Monday, 24 October, 2022
Comunicación y Marketing Corporativo IQS

IQS hosted the opening academic event of the 22-23 school year for Ramon Llull University (URL), showcasing its commitment to sustainability. After a Eucharist in the Sant Ignasi de Sarrià College chapel led by the Cardinal Archbishop of Barcelona, Joan Josep Omella, the academic event was held at IQS-URL and chaired by the Rector Josep Antoni Rom and the President of the Board of Trustees of the URL, Antoni Millet Abbad.

The academic event began with a speech by the President of the Board of Trustees of the URL, Antoni Millet Abbad, who indicated that the Board is "incredibly satisfied" with the path that the URL has taken during its more than 30 years of existence, in which it has made great progress in becoming more cohesive. This union, the president explained, is what has prepared the university to address the necessary cross-disciplinarity that the knowledge society is demanding with increasing intensity.

Next, Anna Berga, general secretary of the URL, gave an introduction to the summary of the annual report from the previous academic year and gave a projection of the report in audiovisual format as a new feature this year.

María del Carmen Llasat, Professor of Atmospheric Physics at the University of Barcelona, gave the opening lecture "The University's transcendent call as a transformer for a more sustainable world."

Llasat reflected on the ravages of climate change and sustainable development. "It's our duty. Because if it seems that we're lacking awareness about something, it's that today in the twenty-first century, we now have the knowledge about the consequences of our actions on nature, climate, and the world that we did not have before." In fact, Llasat explained, "when the industrial revolution began, we were also not yet aware of the serious impact it would have on the world's climate over the years. It's the knowledge that we now have today that makes our responsibility even greater."

The professor asked what could be expected as a response from Ramon Llull University and explained that the current situation requires bold answers that incorporate the faculty's knowledge and wisdom with the restlessness and innovative spirit of students, supported by good governance. "The call for comprehensive ecological conversion is born in the individual sphere and is manifested in the spiritual dimension, lifestyles, and the mobilization towards a more sustainable world. Only from here will we be able to understand, within a society marked by overconsumption and economic success, the proposals based on less being more, the idea that you can be happy with little, or climate justice. This leads to changing our lifestyles in a way that is coherent with a planet that has limited resources and with the spirit on which this university is based."

To conclude her speech, the Llasat stressed that Ramon Llull University "has already begun this path towards sustainability, as shown by its adherence to the Laudato Si Universities network, or the actions that each school is developing," and that it "has talented individuals who are furthering this call to greater action" and are "making it a leader in the transformation towards a more sustainable world."

For his part, the Cardinal Archbishop of Barcelona, Joan Josep Omella, praised the work done by the URL since its founding and shared the importance of working today in the affective field for students and accompanying them humanly and spiritually. "I have discovered that not only do you take great care of the intellectual field, to prepare solid professionals for the future, but you also seek to open the doors to solidarity. And that is very important,” the Cardinal added.

Finally, Rector Josep Antoni Rom kicked off the academic year with a speech in which he referred to Llasat's reflections first of all: “We have a responsibility. Dr Llasat has told us that ‘the call for comprehensive ecological conversion is born in the individual sphere and is manifested in the spiritual dimension, lifestyles, and the mobilization towards a more sustainable world.' Our values and our ideology push us to work towards these aims. We are doing this, but I hope we can help find new answers that prevent us from falling into the efficiency paradigm which, as you have so keenly observed, is a danger that is ever present for us.”

Rom spoke of the horizons of the past and the present, referring to the previous year's annual report that was presented. The rector said that what's important is that Ramon Llull University "is a mature organization that is adapting to the needs of our time." With this in mind, he highlighted certain teaching, research, and internationalization aspects that demonstrate it.

The rector also placed special emphasis on the value of sports and the student body. On the one hand, he said that sports "are one of the most cohesive activities in the URL community" and stressed that it is often athletes "who teach us the value of working together better." He said that students "are our raison d'être and the driver of university life." With this in mind, the rector stated that this year has been "the year of sports at the URL" and pointed out that "we coordinated the Catalan Championships and our students participated actively in the event".

In addition, the rector referred to the Student Council, which works tirelessly to be active in student representation committees and councils. "I encourage you to follow this path, because during your time in university, you learn not just in the classroom, but also about how public commitments, social commitments, sports, and cultural activities are other schools where you can develop your skills and your critical thinking," he said.

The rector concluded his speech by recalling that the commitment of the new leadership is focused on cohesion, values, and innovation. He stated that these lines of action are shared with the governing bodies, with the faculty, and with the teams of specialists, whom he wanted to thank for the daily effort and enthusiasm they bring to the URL. As a solid example of collaboration and cohesion, Rom highlighted the integration of the Faculty of Philosophy at La Salle-URL. "We aim to carry out projects under this mandate from this perspective," he observed.