Microsoft Corporation Hosts First Latin American Summit on Technology and Higher Education

REDMOND, Wash., August 31, 2000 — Microsoft Corporation has brought together 50 leaders from some of the most important Latin American universities to discuss the impact of new technologies in education and the improvement it brings to the learning process within the region. From August 31 through September 1 this summit will focus on potential advances that can be made through technology solutions in order to raise education quality and overcome the technology gap in the region, so that Latin American countries can effectively respond to the demands of 21 st century’s globalized world.

“It’s exciting to work with deans of the major universities in Latin America to better understand how information technology can help improve the quality of education and increase access to learning in the 21st century,”
said Toby Richards,Director of Education Customer Marketing at Microsoft. “Microsoft’s commitment is part of our ongoing efforts to support education at all levels. We invited the deans to this summit because we are convinced that helping education is one of our best investments. It is a bet for the future and progress of all nations.”

Some major challenges universities are facing today in Latin America are: how to leverage Information Technology to cut costs and reach more students, and how to integrate IT in the curriculum development to address the skills gap issue. Microsoft will propose some answers by showing how its platform and its new technologies can help them to achieve their goals in the next few years.

“This summit represents a very important step towards our goal of contributing with Latin America to become an active participant of the Connected Learning Community, where students and teachers have access to learning at any time and at any place”
said Mauricio Santill
n, regional vice-president for Latin America at Microsoft Corporation.
“In this digital age it is very important to be aware of technology advances and fully deploy every advantage they bring to us, so that we can improve our productivity and explore new ways of education and research. This is one of the summit’s objectives, and we are very enthusiastic about the positive response we received from all these Latin American Universities.”

Worldwide, Microsoft supports higher education in several ways with a focus on the creation of the 21 st Century Campus. These campuses are the vital links for the Connected Learning Communities, where a dynamic environment is created, to allow students to develop lifelong learning capabilities, get prepared to join the IT-based workforce and, along with their faculties, have access to enriched knowledge bases. Ultimately, management and business tasks, such as student registry and financial statements, are dramatically improved, giving great support to all type of processes that take place within a university.

“Technology is becoming a major player in the education process, and universities face the challenge of understanding and taking advantage of it for positive impacts on the quality of our services and in the lifestyles of our communities”
said Lissette Rodr
guez, CIO at Pontific Catholic University in Puerto Rico.
“Therefore we are looking forward to hearing in this summit all the proposals Microsoft has to offer for these purposes”

Orlando Ayala, vice-president of world sales, market and support at Microsoft Corporation, and Toby Richards, director of education customer marketing will host this meeting. Some general managers, as well as education and market managers from several Microsoft Latin American subsidiaries and offices also will attend this summit.

“We, as a region, are in the right time to reach an agreement on how to overcome one of our biggest challenges: the lack of equal access to technology in all social layers, which generates the ‘skills gap’,”
said Dr. Henry Vargas, dean at Universidad de los Andes from Venezuela.
“For the first time, many leaders of the sector are gathering with such experts in this issue as Microsoft. I foresee big results in terms of receiving key proposals and finding together a clearer scope of the opportunities and solutions technology has to offer. This will allow us, in the near future, to easily develop new tools to improve education in our countries”

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software — any time, any place and on any device.

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information about Microsoft and its vision on education, please visit and/or

Addendum A

Participating universities in the first Latin American Summit on Education and Technology:

  • Universidad Nacional

  • Universidad Piloto

  • Universidad De La Sabana

  • Universidad De Los Andes

  • Pontificia Universidad Javeriana

  • Cesa

  • Universidad Jorge Tadeo Lozano

  • Universidad Nacional

  • Universidad De La Sabana

  • Universidad De Los Andes

  • Pontificia Universidad Javeriana

  • Universidad Piloto

  • Ministerio de Educacion y Cultura

  • Escuela Politecnica Nacional – EPN

  • Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Ecuador

  • Universidad Catolica Santiago de Guayaquil

  • Universidad Andina

  • Universidad Privada San Martin de Porres

  • Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Peru

  • Universidad Nacional de Ingenieria

  • Escuela Superior de Administracion de Negocios

  • Universidad San Ignacio de Loyola

  • Universidad Central de Venezuela

  • Universidad de Los Andes

  • Universidad Metropolitana

  • Universidad Nueva Esparta

  • UPEL

  • Universidad Catolica Andres Bello

  • Universidad Rafael Belloso Chacin

  • Universidad del Zulia

  • Universidad Centro Occidental Lisandro Alvarado

  • Universidad Simon Bolivar

  • Universidad Bicentenaria de Aragua

  • Universidad de Oriente

  • Universidad Nacional Experimental Simon Rodriguez

  • IESA

  • Universidad de Carabobo


  • Red de Institutos Universitarios

  • Universidad Fermin Toro

  • Universidad Rafael Belloso Chacin

  • Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Puerto Rico

  • Pontificia Universidad Catolica Madre y Maestra de la Republica Dominicana

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