Tops marks from students

Adeje Summer University students happy with courses

On the last day of the 2018 Adeje Summer University, as is the norm, participants were asked to fill in a short questionnaire on the courses they attended and evaluate their experience – and yet again the University scored top marks!

According to Adeje education councillor Adolfo Alonso Ferrera and the University of La Laguna (ULL) vice-rector Francisco García, the overall satisfaction rating was higher than last year and students also gave a high approval rating to changes in the modular format on offer this year. One of highest rated courses was that on sign language, with courses in art, literature and the environment also popular.

Interesting data was also available on the profile of students (over 700) who attended the university this year, with over 60% saying they signed up to improve their general knowledge and 23% to improve their CV. 96% of those matriculating were from Tenerife, 34% from Adeje itself, something very important to the local education department as it reflects a positive reception by the people of the borough. More women than men took courses; nearly 40% are employed, 22% looking for work and 23% in full time education.









Sport is a learning tool

Hugo Bustillo Onandia, lecturer on sports during the Adeje Summer University, told students that,  “Sport is a very potent tool with which we can change many things in society and if used well, the winning or losing will be circunstancial, but the values we learn through sport – respect, treatment of others, team work, training, healthy life-style habits – are what will stay with us.”

The title of the course “El Deportes desde otra perspectiva” (sports from another perspective) was also a forum for debate among sporting professionals, including members of the Adeje sports department, looking at sport as more than just a series of competitions.  “It’s about the vision of who is training, refereeing or taking part in sporting activities”.

During the three day course particiapnts  looked at adapted sports, asking how they can improve the area of special needs sports for all.  Diet was also discussed as was the issue of doping in sport, with discussions on both the latest methods for detection drug use in top professionals as well as looking at the reasons athletes turn to banned performance-enhancing drugs.

Canarian wines, different and delicous


Adeje workshop on the characteristics of Canarian wines


The world of wine returned to the Adeje Summer University this year with two workshops presenting and examining the particular characteristics of wines from the region, and why Canarian wines are becoming well known and liked outside the islands. Surprisingly, there is a still a notable percentage of the local population who reject their own wines, something workshops like these seeks to change.

The Thursday workshop was led by Juan García Socas, president of the main Gran Canarian Wine group and a professional taster, and Ricardo Aguasca Colomo, university professor from the Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. People were shown the background to professional tastings and were able to try various wines from all of the islands.


As García Socas explained, wine production is something very rooted in the local agriculture, gastronomy and economy. Canarian wines owe their special characteristics to the earth, the volcanic ground and the trade winds, making the wines unique. Add to the mix the grapes used here in the Canary Islands, and that it is a territory that has been free of the phylloxera plague that attacked European vines in the 19th century.

The experts also argued that they were not asking people to say Canarian wines are “better or worse” than others, simply to acknowledge that they are different, and with an ever-increasing number of fans here and beyond, wine drinkers in search of new flavours and aromas, who also appreciate wines made under quality controls.



When teen relationships turn violent!

The goal is that these young people will become a reference point within their own communities

One of the free complementary courses during Adeje Summer University is for young people aged between 14 – 30 who live in the borough, and who are interested in become community volunteers in combatting gender violence, particularly among their peers.

The course has been run in the Adeje youth centre and is the second time the council have organised this form of training, with a high satisfaction rating among the participants. Previously 13 young people took part and the training is given by members of the ‘Federacion de Asociaciones de Mujers Arena y Laurisilva’, who have been working in the area of equality and gender violence prevention for over 20 years.

The reasoning behind the course, according to the councillor for equality Carmen Lucía Rodríguez del Toro, is “to continue with the basic training when the school term starts, developing a series of awareness-raising workshops in the borough’s secondary schools.  We believe it is fundamental that our young people are involved in training and awareness regarding this subject matter”.

The goal is that these young people will become a reference point within their own communities and share values of equality and the benefits of relationships based on social equality, and help any woman who needs to escape from a situation where she is suffering gender violence.  Students are also learning about the laws that apply to gender violence, the myths that society may perpetuate, etc.






















The ‘best teacher in Spain’ in Adeje

César Bona will lead a workshop, in Spanish “Escuchar para Educar” (listen to teach) on the challenges facing teachers today

As part of the Adeje Summer University, César Bona, often called `the best teacher in Spain’ will give a talk on Thursday July 26th where he will discuss the challenges facing educators in today’s world. Bona was one of 50 finalists, out of 5,000 entrants in 127 countries, for the prestigious Global Teacher Prize in 2015.

“Rather than limiting the data in our head, we have to change the vision of education, give more importance to opening doors that invite children to express what they have inside. When we begin to listen and evaluate what everyone has to say and to bring, that’s when we begin to understand and when they begin to better understand”, says Bona, who is a qualified teacher as well as holding degrees in English and in teaching in a foreign language. His talk, in Spanish, is scheduled for 6pm.

Other parallel activities taking place as part of the Adeje Summer University include an art exhibition, “Inspiración África” and a number of local and regional radio stations have also been broadcasting live from the campus (in the Adeje Cultural Centre) throughout the week. Six books have been launched; there have been live concerts in the Calle Grande too, with music from
“El método Stanislavski”, “Fran Baraja & Parranda Blues Band”, “Quimbao la Nuit”, “El Cardón” and “Together”.

The full programme of parallel cultural activities is available online,





Music as therapy!


Music can help those with Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s


As part of the Adeje Summer University, Professor Julián González González is running a three day course on the study of music neurophysiology, and how it affects the brain, etc. He talked students through the recognition of sound to how it then provokes certain reactions, sensations, recognised by the brain, associations with certain emotions and different cognitive processes. In the is regard it is now believed music will have therapeutic benefits for certain ailments, “there are advanced investigations which show music is producing improvements in those suffering from Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s”, he stated.

The course director explained that music therapy does have a solid scientific base and all results of related testing are subject to proper scientific criteria. Today, in the USA and the UK more than anywhere else, certain hospitals now have special units dedicated to this kind of therapeutic investigation.

“Scientifically this shows that for certain conditions, ailments, music can help, but this is still a relatively new branch. We need to study more to see what kind of emotions different music provokes, and, within cognitive phenomena, which grade of mental dysfunction may be affected”.

The course isn’t just looking at music therapy, but also, on a wider scale, explaining the music process from a neurophysiological and biophysical base, music pedagogy and music in the animal world. Regarding music pedagogy, González says that music teaching in primary and secondary education is relevant “because music and musical training helps cognitive skills develop and would appear to improve certain aspects of our humanity”. And in the animal world, the investigation is looking at the impact sound and music may have and their importance in the animal kingdom, from bird song to the use of sonar by bats. “The spectrum of sound in the animal world is huge”, he remarked.

The influence of our culture would explain why human beings are more receptive to musical tones, as they and we have evolved over the centuries. Music with different tonal structures produces different effects and emotions, but says González, the study of those effects has still a long way to go.








Dancing on the street in Adeje

Literature, music, and radio throughout the Adeje Summer University

The Adeje Summer University (UVA), as well as offering courses and workshops, is running a series of parallel events. Yesterday, Monday July 23rd, there were a number of book launches and a concert in the Calle Grande, with the ‘El Método Stanislavski’ group and their 80s sound.

Today, July 24th, La Cope radio broadcast a live programme from the UVA base, and in the afternoon there are more book launches, a concert with Fran Baraja & Parranda Blues Band. The Adeje library has been working with the Todo Hobbie La Calve bookshop in organising some of the book-related events.

Similar events are programmed for the rest of the week – more information online,





Post truths and workers rights today!

Adeje Summer University – Day 1

The rights of workers in the 21st global market place and the emergence of post-truth in politics were just two of the subjects under the spotlight during day one of the Adeje Summer University.

The University of La Laguna law professor, Gloria Rojas Rivero, is leading the course on “Globalización y empresas en red: organización empresarial y nuevas formas de trabajo” – globalisation and internet businesses and new forms of work. In particular she is looking at the consequences of this new form of business and employment for workers and their work conditions with workforces spread across many different national jurisdictions “We are examining how we deal with the main concerns of institutions dealing with workers’ rights and conditions given the phenomenon of global economy”, she explained.

Over the three days of the course students will examine delimitation, inter-company cooperation, franchising, sub-contract networks, unions, collaborative platforms, and how workers can identify and guarantee their rights. She said that to date “the rights of workers are not evolving to meet the new needs” and to date most of the new problems for workers haven’t been adequately dealt with. “The new business networks means that a company can make its products in over 60 different countries and those workers are subject to different labour laws and conditions”.

The highly regarded television correspondent Rosa María Calaf was the main speaker at the opening session of a conference on the history and social communication of Macaronesia, as part of the Summer University. She offered students a personal vision of journalism today, in particular ‘post-truth’ (in which debate is framed largely by appeals to emotion disconnected from details, and by the repetition of talking points with speakers rebutting the presentation of facts). And while it might seem like a new development, she says post-truths have been around for a long time, but are more prevalent today.

The existence or peddling of ‘false news’ goes back over many years – she referred to Charles II of England in 1762 who had to issue an edict outlawing false news about the Crown circulating in taverns. Post-truths appeal to the emotion, and is nothing new, but what has changed, she argues, is that new technology increases the widespread impact and speed of circulation of post-truths. She named Brexit, the election of Trump, the recent Italian general election, and the Catalan situation, as examples of issues that had and are affected by the use of post-truths.

The Adeje Summer University runs all week with course, workshops and parallel cultural activities in the centre of Adeje town.


Summer University inauguration


Journalist Paloma del Río opened the university week with a speech on sexism in sport


The 26th Adeje Summer University was inaugurated at noon today in a ceremony in the Adeje Convent. The Adeje mayor, José Miguel Rodríguez Fraga, praised the continuance of the summer school adding “we are meeting a real need, dealing with subjects that matter to the population as a whole”

The mayor said that educational institutions were there to deal with issues of common interest and this initiative had allowed Adeje to open new academic connections, which had led to the creation of a university campus here in the south of Tenerife, where today a full Tourism degree was now on offer. Third level education is a priority, he said, in particular in a tourism borough where, in the past, young people had left school to work without finishing their education, with the growth of the hotel and holiday sectors, and resultant jobs.

The vice-rector of the University of La Laguna (ULL) Francisco García, said the courses this year would offer “a feast of knowledge” starting next Monday, with 10 courses and 14 workshops in modular and flexible formats to meet the needs of today’s student as well as an international investigative congress. He also referred to the wide range of parallel cultural activities scheduled, with concerts, book launches, live radio programmes, etc. And with over 700 students already signed up, it shows “that those who will attend next week are not just looking for university credits but also reflect a thirst for information and education in many different disciplines”.

The ULL rector, Antonio Martinón, thanked Adeje for helping “the ULL complete one of its missions – the extending of knowledge into our society in general”. He also told those in attendance that tomorrow (Saturday July 21st) they would also be celebrating the graduation of the third Tourism degree class in South Tenerife, in Adeje, and from the next academic year a number of related post-graduate courses would also be on offer here. He made special reference to the Adeje mayor’s commitment to education, “it is a pleasure to see a politician defending such a basic need as education today”.

Women and sport
The Spanish television journalist Paloma del Río delivered the university inaugural address, and introducing her to the audience, Adeje sports councillor Adolfo Alonso said she was “an inspiration for hundreds and hundreds of people who have decided to take up journalism”. Del Río started her talk referring to the two things that had to be eliminated from sports – sexism and the invisibility (of the importance of female athletes). “We are all responsible for the current situation – from communication media to politicians and business leaders”, she said.

Too often, she said, the media forgets that there are women in sport, or talks about them in terms of their marital and maternal status, their figure or physical aspect, their personal lives, their appearance, something that is much rarer when they are discussing male athletes. Women are given ‘cute’ titles, or nicknames, while their male counterparts will often be labelled as superheroes. Del Río said that there were some sports federations now beginning to address the matter, but taking ‘timid steps’ still.

“Journalists continue to treat female sport as a ‘slave’ to male sports”, she argued, where even today you will find the success of a female athlete attributed to her adopting male physical attributes, for instance. “This kind of sexism is unacceptable in the 21st century”, she said”, “and the media are still a long way away from properly recognising the achievements of women in all aspects of life”. If the presence of women in politics or the economy or health circles is minimum, “in sport it is practically invisible” Del Río pointed out.

This is not just a Spanish problem but similar at international level, with the sexualisation of photographing female athletes, concentrating on their looks before their sporting successes. “Sporting journalism is still a man’s world, for male consumers” she stated, though she did notice that women athletes are using social media to work to shift the balance on their own behalf. She also praised the Adeje Summer University for including a course on sports journalism this year,


Spain’s top sporting journalist to give summer university inaugural address


Paloma del Río Cañadas, one of the best known faces and voices in television sport’s coverage in Spain, will give the Adeje Summer University (UVA) inaugural address on July 20th at 12 noon in the Adeje Convento. The event will be attended by local and University of La Laguna authorities, business and official representatives and is also open to the public. The title of her talk will be (translated) ‘Media coverage of women in sport and their invisibility’.

She studied information sciences at the Universidad Complutense, Madrid, and graduated in 1989. Today she is the official coordinator of sponsorship and sporting federations for RTVE, Spain’s national television station. She has also held the position of director of sports programme and chief sports reporter. Her voice is one of the most widely recognised in sports reporting nationally, and she has covered national and international competitions and 14 Olympic Games (Winter and Summer).

Paloma del Río has received numerous awards for her work, and is also a novelist in her own right. She is currently working on a book on the role of women in sport.

As well as delivering the inaugural address the sports presenter will also give a workshop as part of the UVA on (translated) ‘Sports journalism: stories of innovation and learning’, which will be on July 23rd at 12 noon, looking at the evolution of sport’s journalism. Registration for the course is still open,