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A Global Partnership

Fr. Leahy with Rector Ignacio Sanchez of the Catholic University of Chile and BC parent Andrónico Luksic
Fr. Leahy and Boston College have launched a partnership with Rector Ignacio Sánchez of the Catholic University of Chile (center) and BC parent Andrónico Luksic.

Luksic Gift Promotes Ties with Catholic University of Chile

The 5,000 miles separating Chestnut Hill and Santiago, Chile, became infinitely, if figuratively, smaller this August when leaders from Boston College traveled to South America to inaugurate a three-year partnership with the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile.

The collaboration with the top-ranked university in Spanish-speaking Latin America will generate research and teaching initiatives between the two institutions, with potential scholarly intersections across disciplines from theology and nursing to social work and law.

BC parent and Santiago native Andrónico Luksic is the principal benefactor behind this innovative endeavor. The Luksic family has long supported the Catholic University of Chile, and Luksic has valued the education his daughter, Fernanda ’14, is receiv­ing at Boston College, prompting him to make a gift that will help unite these preeminent centers of learning.

“Beyond the immediate task of sending and re­ceiving their academic experts, Boston College and the Catholic University of Chile have the unique opportunity to work together to enhance the collabo­ration between Chile and the U.S., which our future generations and leaders will benefit from tremen­dously,” said Luksic, chairman of Quiñenco S.A., a leading Chilean business conglomerate.

University President William P. Leahy, S.J., and six BC deans and distinguished faculty joined Luksic and members of the Catholic University of Chile in Santiago at the formal signing of the part­nership on August 5.

“The generosity of Andrónico Luksic will make it possible for the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile and Boston College to work together in pro­grams advancing the mission of both schools,” said Fr. Leahy.

This association punctuates the recent efforts of Boston College to expand its relationships in the region, with Fr. Leahy also visiting a group of students participating in the BC summer course, Through the Eyes of Service: Social Justice in Chile, at the Jesuit-run Universidad Alberto Hurtado.

Further inroads have already been made with the latest partnership. Three Catholic University of Chile professors will visit and engage in projects address­ing education and economic development with BC faculty this academic year—and many deans, including Alberto Godenzi of the Graduate School of Social Work, foresee expanded strategic possibilities.

“I see outcomes that will lead to real transfor­mation,” he says. “I envision mutually beneficial research partnerships with our Center for Social Innovation and collaboration with our Interna­tional PhD in Social Welfare program, with Chilean students returning to enact change in their home country.”

Pontifical Catholic University of Chile

▪ Founded in 1888

▪ Top-ranked university in Spanish-speaking Latin America

▪ Students: 26,195

▪ Schools and institutes: 31

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