The Bolivarian government announced Monday the creation of two new state universities dedicated to tourism and information technology.
Based in Barcelona in the northeastern state of Anzoátegui, the National Tourism University (UNATUR) opened its doors to its first class of 300 students, with plans to expand enrollment to 2,040 students over the coming years.
The new institution forms part of the Maduro government’s initiative to diversify the country’s highly oil-dependent economy, known as the Bolivarian Economic Agenda.
According to Tourism Minister Marleny Contreras, the graduates of the new university will serve to “position Venezuela as a multi-destination country”.
At UNATUR’s new installations, students will have the opportunity to take classes in gastronomy, information technology, languages, as well as a variety of other academic and practical subjects.
Next year the university will open up two new campuses in Caracas and on Margarita Island.
The Maduro government also unveiled plans Monday to inaugurate before the close of the year the National University of Telecommunications and Information Technology in Caracas.
The new university will likewise be tasked with training a new generation of professionals for a post-oil economy.
“[The goal] is to create a new society where university level scientific education is put at the service of the productive forces that our motherland needs,” declared President Nicolas Maduro.
The president additionally announced that the government would be relaunching a program to distribute tablet computers to public university students in January. Likewise, he revealed that the state would be increasing secondary and university scholarships by 50 percent.
Together, the latest two universities created by the president represent the 32nd and 33rd public universities established under the Bolivarian Revolution.