Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (UC): UC formalizes access to Higher Education program for women deprived of liberty

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On July 22, the rector Ignacio Sánchez signed the Decree that formalizes the program “In Freedom of Education” (ELEDUC) at the Catholic University. The initiative seeks to favor the social integration of women deprived of liberty. This, through a program that enhances and accompanies their educational trajectories and their first stage of labor insertion.

“The Decree was very important since it made it possible to formalize an incredible project that had already been in operation for some years. Initially it arose from the interest and hard work of some teachers and students. And now it has become a program of the University”, indicates Catalina García, director of Inclusion UC.

The initiative seeks to favor the social integration of women deprived of liberty. This, through a program that enhances and accompanies their educational trajectories and their first stage of labor insertion.

After institutionalization, the program will be conducted by the Inclusion Department , in collaboration with other units of the Catholic University.


“The Decree was very important since it allowed the formalization of an incredible project that had been in operation for several years. Initially it arose from the interest and hard work of some teachers and students. And now it has become a university program” – Catalina García , Director of Inclusion UC

Beginnings of the project
ELEDUC had its roots in an initiative of the UC Faculty of Agronomy and Forestry Engineering , after creating a garden in the San Joaquín Women’s Penitentiary Center, in collaboration with the Fundación Mujer Levántate.

Subsequently, and at the initiative of Sister Nelly León -president of the foundation-, a link was sought with the UC that would have a training focus.

In this context, there was a rapprochement between different units of the Catholic University, which allowed a new initiative in conjunction with the Faculty of Education , the UC Pre -university , and the Pastoral. This time, focused on preparing women deprived of their liberty to enter Higher Education.

First experience and next steps
The project started with a pilot of 36 women interested in pursuing a technical career. He currently considers:

Stage of preparation for Higher Education.
Accompaniment during studies.
Support in the initial stage of labor insertion.
Among the participants is Rosario Triviños who completed her basic and secondary education in the penitentiary center. Then, Rosario studied Nursing Technician at Duoc UC , with the support of the ELEDUC pilot and the Fundación Mujer Levántate.

“I have many dreams in my head. I would like to continue training, continue studying in the area of ​​health. I want to give the best of myself as a professional, learn, take care of others (…)«, explains Rosario in the report “An opportunity of insertion for women deprived of liberty”.

“I have many dreams in my head. I would like to continue training, continue studying in the area of ​​health. I want to give my best as a professional, learn, take care of others”- Rosario Triviños

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