On February 26-27, before the start of classes, the Office of International Affairs organized Orientation sessions for the incoming international students. In the main UM building, the diverse group of international students received the necessary information that will help them make the most of their semester in Uruguay.
The activity opened with an official welcome speech from Rector Juan Manuel Gutiérrez Carrau. He started by giving a few words of encouragement for the new exchange students and explained the values and mission of the Universidad de Montevideo. He encouraged students to participate in volunteering activities in the hope of awakening the spirit of community service within the new students. (See the complete speech in this link).
The orientation sessions were offered by staff from UM service departments, as well as academic departments: sports opportunities, volunteering, adventure club, computer services, chaplain services, library services and the internship opportunities in Uruguay through the Career Center. The staff members presented and used cinema to address some topics such as culture shock and the distinct characteristics of Uruguayan culture.
At noon, deans, professors and coordinators of the different UM schools had lunch with the students that came from Germany, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Spain, the United States, Finland, France, the Netherlands, Great Britain, Mexico, Russia, and Brazil. Along with this variety of countries it should be noted that some of the students were born on the islands of Martinique, and Guadeloupe as well as in Iraq.
Towards the end, the UM Volunteering team (VUM) organized a series of recreational activities in the site of the Postgraduate Programs in Carrasco. New students enjoyed group activities with some UM students.