Representatives from the Steve Hicks School of Social Work (SHS) served front and center with a historical international delegation in Mexico City this week at La Feria Internacional del Libro de las Universitarias y los Universitarios 2023.
Better known as FILUNI, the multinational book fair and conference began Aug. 29 on the campus of one of the premier universities in Latin America, the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México in Mexico City. UT Austin served as the first university from the United States to participate as guest of honor at the event, which anticipated more than 35,000 participants from 10 countries.
“When we think about social impact, we can think of it on a global scale,” said Allan Cole, dean of SHS. “Collaborations like this further solidify our established relationships in Mexico and provide even more ways for our School’s faculty, staff, students and alumni to change the world.”
Among the results of the trip included strategy meetings with UNAM (Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México) leadership to plan academic and research initiatives; an academic presentation on youth and risk prevention by SHS clinical assistant professor René Gaitan; shared collaboration with several deans and University leadership within UT on SHS-led initiatives; and facilitated connections with some of UT’s 4,000+ Texas Exes living in Mexico.
“There is tremendous opportunity with UNAM for collaborative binational research partnerships, international academic exchange programs for faculty and students, virtual seminars focused on topics of high relevance for both institutions, and more,” said Rubén Parra-Cardona, associate dean for global engagement at SHS. “Our relationship with Mexico is special and can be traced back over decades. We have now new opportunities to leverage our relationship with UNAM to build on our global social impact.”
René Gaitan presents at FILUNI 2023
René Gaitan throws the Horns Up after completing his presentation on family therapy techniques at FILUNI 2023 in Mexico City.
Dean Allan Cole and Associate Dean Rubén Parra-Cardona meet with UNAM academic leaders to discuss global initiatives.
FILUNI 2023 Exhibit Hall
Jay Hartzell Address
UT Austin sent the largest international delegation in its history to this event, representing more than 130 individuals across 20 colleges, schools, and units (CSUs). The University of Texas Press, a FILUNI participant since the book fair’s inaugural year, showcased 600 of its titles, with more than 1,100 books available for purchase at the fair’s on-site bookstore.
“FILUNI is an opportunity for UT to lead these conversations on an international scale and present the groundbreaking works of our leading faculty members and scholars on pressing issues,” Jay Hartzell, UT Austin president, said in a statement. “Mexico and its universities have been and will be among our most valued partners.”