What do ex-President Oscar Arias, Citizen Action Party founder Ottón Solís and several other Costa Rican politicians, artists and economists have in common?
They all studied at British universities.
Now, the British Embassy in Costa Rica wants to put them in contact with each other through the recently formed British-Costa Rican Academic Association, or the Association of Ex-Scholars, as it’s described on their Facebook page.
Through the network, former college students from Costa Rica who studied in the U.K. will be invited to special embassy events, or can reach out to each other to share opinions or seek advice. The association also will plan activities to help Costa Rican communities.
The association was launched last Thursday at an event held in the residence of British Ambassador Sharon Campbell. More than 100 former students attended from diverse age groups and backgrounds.
“I traveled to Manchester in 1976 to earn a master’s degree in monetary policy,” Solís, a former presidential candidate, said. “The experience changed my life. I was moved by the order, service and honesty of the British. I’m elated to see so many people here [at the association’s inauguration] who have had the same experience.”
Architect Juan Carlos Sanabria, director of the architecture faculty at Costa Rica’s Universidad Véritas, said that thanks to his experience at the Architectural Association School of Architecture, many doors opened in Costa Rica.
“That university is one of a kind in the field. Only the best study there, and that was a tremendous help in finding a job in Costa Rica,” he said.
Campbell said that any Costa Rican who obtained a university degree in the U.K. can become an association member. For more information, email Sheila Pacheco at: [email protected]