Scholarship shortages, check out another from Konahset

Today concludes the call for National grants to Postgraduate studies 2023they still leave management students from seven public universities in limbo, who have been denied support because – despite promising global scholarships – National Council for the Humanities, Science, Technology and Innovation Conahcyt considers that his field is not a national priority. This situation is just the tip of the iceberg of problems Konahset is facing due to the changes made by its current administration.

“What we are seeing is the result of two currents: on the one hand, after the dismantling of a system that operates with qualification and transparent criteria,” on the other hand, the budget deficit that Conahit was dragging, he says Brenda ValderramaResearcher at the UNAM Institute of Biotechnology and specialist in science policy.

In July 2021, the National Postgraduate Quality Program (PNPC) disappeared and the National Postgraduate Program (SNP) was established. he PNPC It was dedicated to evaluating the quality of postgraduate courses (some indicated it was in high demand). Those rated best can offer their students Konahsite scholarships. However, for the Conahcyt chairwoman, this program, which she says was created in the neoliberal era, was discriminatory and prioritized a central “productivity” vision and that its evaluation was quantitative.

Read also: Conahcyt agrees to offer scholarships to UAGro

That’s why it is PNPC It was replaced by the SNP system, a system “in line with the structural transformation process that the country is going through,” as expressed in the third framework. The National Postgraduate Forum “New Foundations for Conasset Postgraduate Training and Research” 2021. It is also promised that this new model will have “greater scientific and social rigor” and that it will promote the principle of “non-discrimination” in order to guarantee “worldwide scholarship.” This change also states that there will be no assessment and that all graduate programs listed in the SNP will be able to offer scholarships to all.

“Now they just register and the demagogic populist part comes in to tell everyone we will give them a scholarship because no one will be left without a scholarship. They are supposed to give a scholarship to every graduate who registers without doing any evaluation. But the grants are Tuition will not be enough,” she said, noting that the PNPC can be criticized for its level of demand and pressure, but that it has also helped promote graduate studies in Mexico.

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Valderrama notes that Conahcyt dismantled a system that operates according to quality standards and that it was “downgraded from being a sector head to an agency providing scholarships” for SNI and postgraduate courses, the latter becoming a “customer program” whose size is difficult to cover with current resources.

Only Conahcyt currently faces a budget shortfall of 1,432,855,786 pesos, the board itself reported in an email to members of the National Scholars System, whose support will be withdrawn due to a lack of resources. This happened on May 18th.

Faced with the fact that it does not have sufficient funds to guarantee global scholarships, Conahcyt has established a new standard of five priorities, which, the specialists explain, are arbitrary and open to interpretation. Scholarships are subject to budget, so the lower the priority for a graduate school, the less likely scholarships will be awarded.

The new standards sets doctoral students from public institutions and Public research centers Focuses on priority areas and disciplines of interest – the choice of which is very wide as it ranges from the field of mathematical physics to artistic production and arts to design. In second place are master’s degrees from public institutions and public research centers that focus on priority areas and disciplines of interest. Valderrama says that the division between a PhD and a master’s degree is wrong, because if a master’s degree is neglected, it will be difficult for students to reach a doctorate.

In third place are doctoral and master’s degrees from public institutions in priority areas, but with a purely professional rather than research focus. “Prioritizing research programs over professionals means that Conahcyt forgoes generating qualified professionals, i.e. doing what (Alvarez Buella) complain: that there are many researchers without social impact. “Unprofessionalism means becoming more detached from the national reality,” says Valderrama.

In fourth place are doctoral and master’s degrees from private institutions, and in fifth place are doctoral and master’s degrees from public and private institutions that do not work in priority specializations in the country. This was where management science was laid down, a field whose previous generations have always received scholarships.

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“They have to go back and create another chart of priorities. There are five categories on the call. Who decides what is priority or not? She (Alvarez Buela). It’s completely discretionary and open to interpretation; you see the list of priority areas and in the social sciences comes business and management, and economics … But if a graduate course doesn’t have that name or keyword, it’s no longer a priority. That’s completely arbitrary,” says Valderrama.

Another problem with the change from PNPC to SNP was that Conahcyt tried to eliminate universities as intermediaries, making the scholarship process between the board and students, causing chaos for the rejected students.

When last Friday the council held a meeting with the affected students, it explained to them that they were denied the scholarship because their region is not a national priority, because their universities did not detail the social impact of their field of study. Therefore, he advised them to speak with the postgraduate coordinators to amend the situation. He also said that in 2022 his universities have been informed that management science is no longer a priority area.

“Last week we learned from students that they had received an email informing Conahcete that the postgraduate course they applied for was in Category 5, and therefore they had been denied the scholarship. One of those affected,” said Francisco Javier Pedroza, Director of Research and Graduate Studies at the Autonomous University of Aguascalientes, one of those affected. No contact was ever made.”

Valderrama explains that Konahset wanted to follow a presidential directive to eliminate middlemen, but that it was “ridiculous” to pass on that idea to calls for postgraduate scholarships because universities were not middlemen: “They confuse gymnastics with magnesia. It’s not the same thing to have a beneficiary program as it is.” In the countryside, where the peasant associations stepped in, got the resource and distributed it to the peasants. These are middlemen, and in this case the graduate students were not middlemen, and they did not receive the resources to disperse them. The boys did not depend on the graduate students to receive money. He was completely wrong about that “.

Francisco Xavier Pedroza He also states that his university clearly communicated the social and scientific impact of each of these theses. “We have been complying with what Conahcyt asked us. At the moment, all affected are from administrative regions, it is very complicated that all universities have been wrong in detailing the impact of the field of administrative sciences.”

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Konahset agreed last Friday with the students to review the application by applying and determine who will receive a scholarship from those affected by management sciences, but he made it clear that he does not guarantee the scholarship to everyone, because he does not have sufficient funds. At the beginning of the week it was announced that after talks with Conahcyt, students were affected by UAMthe UNAMThe Scholarship will be awarded by the Autonomous University of Guerrero. They were joined yesterday by students from IPN, from independent universities in Baja California, Aguascalientes, Tamaulipas, Coahuila, Hidalgo and the State of Mexico.

But at the conclusion of this edition, there was still a comment: file Michoacana University In San Nicolas Hidalgo (Michoacan), the Aguascalientes Campus of the Tecnológico Nacional de México, Universidad Veracruzana, Universidad Juárez Autónoma de Tabasco, Technological Institute of Sonora, University of Guadalajara and University of Guanajuato.

Given the uncertainty, the students announced that they have requested another dialogue table with Conahcyt to ensure scholarships are offered to students from within the Republic.

“There is not enough budget. Now I don’t know where they will continue to patch the problem. In the end, Conahcyt may get the money from the treasury to fill this shortfall that it brings,” says Valderrama.

Conahcyt’s financial situation is not going well, they only have money for scholarships and SNI. It seems to me that it all comes together in this case as we see the consequences and I think there will be more. All this is how Elena’s politics and ideology are unified,” concludes researcher Alma Maldonado.

Read also: Conahcyt has changed its mind and will offer scholarships to UNAM students

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