A virtual UNIV
The history of UNIV is closely linked to Rome. This international meeting of university students usually takes place in Rome each year to spend Holy Week and Easter together with the successor of Peter and with the memory of the first Christians.
In 2021, due to the pandemic, UNIV has been "digitalized" and made available to many countries, from Brazil to Kazakhstan, South Africa to Sweden. Depending upon the possibilities of each place, activities are being organized in various modes: face-to-face, online, or hybrid.
Solid education in a liquid society
The theme chosen by the UNIV committee for 2021 is “Navigate: Seeking a Solid Education in a Liquid Society.” This search is grounded on the conviction that the world makes sense and that reality can be known, the need to be reflective people, the importance of studying the classics of literature, and the key role of mentors in the process of personal education, among others.
As explained on UnivInspire.org, “In a society of constant changes, ideas flow continuously at the mercy of the current trend. Nothing seems stable or permanent. In this liquid society, UNIV Inspire is calling for young people to dare reach for solid truth that lies beyond the reach of empirical sciences.”
Webinars and online conferences are being organized from Rome, as well as a selection of TED Talks followed by debates on the web, texts for reading, etc. One of the websites that gathers resources for these days of reflection is UnivForum.org.
During the week, for example, some 500 young people will take part in Glocal Hack, an online learning experience. Divided into international teams, the university students come from almost 40 different countries. Through study and dialogue, local solutions to global challenges are being discussed regarding the topic of this year’s UNIV. Through Instagram, young people will also be able to learn more about the life of the first Christians, an authentic inspiration for today's Catholics.
Rome at the center
It will also be possible to pray close to Saint Josemaria remains in the church of Our Lady of Peace thanks to a virtual connection, and to take part in the Holy Week celebrations in Saint Peter’s Basilica, and in online get-togethers with the Prelate of Opus Dei..