On May 9, the spring meeting of the Academic Council of the Royal Complutense College at Harvard University (RCC-HU) was held.
As is traditional in the spring, the Complutense delegation, chaired by Rector Joaquín Goyache, traveled to the Harvard campus in Cambridge to attend the meeting. Joining the rector were Dámaso López, vice rector for International Relations and Cooperation; Margarita San Andrés, vice rector for Research and Transfer; Andrés Arias, director of the UCM Foundation; and Fernando Marco, Complutense member of the Academic Council. The Vice Chancellor for Students, Rosa de la Fuente, attended the meeting as a guest. Harvard University was represented by the Director of International Affairs, Margot N. Gill, and Professors Gonzalo Giribet and Luis M. Girón, accompanied remotely by Professor David W. Kennedy. This was the first face-to-face meeting on the Cambridge campus since Daniel Sánchez Mata has served as director of the Royal College at Harvard University following his appointment in March 2021.
The Council approved the minutes of its previous meeting, held in Madrid last December, the financial statement for 2021, as well as the proposals for the awarding of grants for higher education studies for Spaniards admitted to Harvard University, the postdoctoral fellowships for the 2022-2023 academic year and the short stays of professors from the RCC member universities at Harvard University (Universidad Complutense, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Alcalá, Valencia and Seville).
Gonzalo Giribet, member of the Academic Council for Harvard University, offered the venue of the Museum of Natural History of the university for the meeting. It took place in the Board Room of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, of which he is director, with an agenda that was fully discussed and debated in regular session. After the meeting, Professor Giribet gave the councilors a private tour of both the exhibition rooms and the research collections of the museum by means of a tour of the rooms of paleontology, entomology, ichthyology, ornithology, invertebrates, etc. There the counselors enjoyed the valuable collections of Harvard University and had the opportunity to pose with the specimen of Kronosaurus queenslandicus on display at Harvard, a fossilized pliosaur of marine life from Australia. They also greeted Elsa, an Arizona desert tarantula that serves as a mascot for the invertebrate researchers at the museum. The visit ended with a tour of the room where the Ware Collection of botanical models is kept. This spectacular collection, unique in the world, was conceived for the teaching of Botany and painstakingly made by the Blaschka family in Bohemian glass between 1886 and 1936 on behalf of Harvard University, with funding from Mary and Elizabeth Ware. It is known internationally as Glass Flowers for its realism and dynamic feel of the models.
The next winter Academic Council is scheduled for December 9 at Complutense University.