MAYAGÜEZ- A music , poetry and solidarity filled night. That´s the best way to describe the "Bohemia in search of knowledge, poetry in search of love" event organized by the Mayagüez University Center for its students, faculty, administrators and members of the community to celebrate Albizu University´s 50th anniversary.
¨Dr. Youssef Ahmad Pereira (Academic Coordinator and Director of the clinic), and Dr. Lourdes Santana (an Associate Professor in the Psychology Department) developed the concept for the event. The first step was to invite our students to write poems inspired by Dr. Albizu´s legacy. An important challenge was launched and, in my view, the result was exceptional," said Mr. Cruz Corraliza, the Center´s coordinator and this event producer.
A jury made up of members of the literary community and poets from the Western area chose the three winners: Edwin Vélez Barreto ( in the photo) won first prize ($100) with the poem "For his name´s sake"; Dayanara Vázquez won second place ($75) with the poem "Psychology´s Knight¨; and Coralys Pérez Méndez won third place ($50) with "A Healing Poem".
"I thought it was a beautiful night to share with our students and well known members of the Mayagüez cultural life. The Casa Pilar Defilló, which also houses the Pablo Casals Museum, was a fabulous setting for the event. I want to emphasize that the enthusiasm generated among the students was outstanding. I enjoyed seeing them and I also loved feeling so many emotions that night of bohemia and poetry," said Sylvia López Jorge, Albizu University´s interim President.
Everything was planned in order to exalt Dr. Albizu´s figure and legacy through the beauty of poetry. Rita Julia, a San Germán singer, accompanied by guitarist Kelvin Acosto (music teacher and administrator of the San Germán´s History Museum) performed songs inspired by poems written by renown authors such as Antonio Machado, Julia de Burgos and Juan Antonio Corretjer. They delighted the audience. Just beautiful.
Dr. Jorge González Monclova, member of Albizu University´s Board of Trustees, shared an anecdote that was received with laughter by the audience.
"Being here at the Pablo Casals Museum brings me memories of my youth, when I was an usher and was asked to accompany Don Pablo to a concert, in case he needed me. He didn´t, but there was I paying very close attention to his every move. If that had happened today perhaps I would have asked him to pose for a selfie with me. I am very pleased to be here enjoying with you this very special evening," said Dr. González Monclova.
The Secretary of the Board of Trustees, Mr. Gualberto Rodríguez, was also present at the Casa Pilar Defilló enjoying the second activity organized to celebrate the 50th anniversary of our university.
Álida Arizmendi, a consultant in cultural affairs for Mayor José Guillermo Rodríguez was also present at the activity. We were also honored by the presence of several members of the Encuentro de Poetas, a group led by Felipe Muñiz González, president of the Eugenio María de Hostos Cultural Center. Other members present were Dr. Nelson Valle Campos, regional director of the Health Department; Awilda Anguita Cruz, representing the Liga Hostosiana; Olga Román, health educator; César Avilés, businessman; Antonio Cruz, Vieques native adopted by Aguada; Dr. Jaybanerjee, a native of India and renown in the field of mechanical engineering at the UPR Mayaguez campus; Cali Vega, writer; Hon. Maritza Rojas, legislator from Mayagüez; and Ninoshka Concepción Anguita, Western Network Director. This group meets the last Friday of every month at the public square in Mayaguez to share their poems.