Francisco Kerdel recalls his career as a doctor and diplomat in an interview in “El Universal”
Francisco Kerdel, full academician the National Academy of Medicine of Venezuela, of the Academy of Physical and Mathematical and Natural Sciences of Venezuela and corresponding academician of the Royal European Academy of Doctors-Barcelona 1914 (RAED), explains in an interview published by the Venezuelan newspaper “El Universal” in its edition last September 28 the beginnings of the Simón Bolívar University, which he founded, of the Program of Venezuelan Talent Abroad, of the programs of the Chair Simón Bolívar of the University of Cambridge what he also founded and of his time as ambassador to several European countries. He also reviews the work of the so-called Virtual Colleges to bring new technologies to the poorest Venezuelan communities and how today, from his home in Madrid, he continues to work tirelessly for the Venezuela he dreams of instead of living his retirement life.
“When I was going to graduate as a doctor, the miracle that changed my life happened, and Armando Planchart and Anala Planchart got me a scholarship to study Dermatology in the United States. Throughout my whole life I have tried to pay them how much they did for me, dedicating time and effort in finding ways and ways to grant such benefits to other young Venezuelans, who with that knowledge and experience can contribute to the development of Venezuela”, he says. Kerdel recalls his difficulties in his early years as a specialist at the Massachusetts General Hospital, in Boston, and at the Skin and Cancer Hospital in New York.
As founder of one of the main centers of higher education in his country and, therefore, in Latin America, Kerdel is very critical of the state of university education in Venezuela. “Very unfortunately education in Venezuela doesn’t conform to reality and forms us as citizens of a very rich country whose natural wealth we can live and enjoy, without using our individual work to support and support the less favored. From my perspective it’s essential to change that legend and be realistic. All these problems lie in a poor educational system, and can and should be resolved with the relevant changes and reforms”, he says.
The academiciN also recalls how the Venezuelan Talent Program Abroad began under the auspices of the academician of the RAED Federico Mayor Zaragoza, then still the general director of Unesco. “My experience as an ambassador of Venezuela in London and Paris allowed me to meet and treat a lot of very interesting people, including diplomatic colleagues, carefully chosen by their countries of origin, and to learn continuously from their extensive cultural backgrounds”, he says. Finally, Kerdel declares that his passion for Venezuela from a distance remains his focus of inspiration. “Venezuela means everything to me. My parents and my teachers instilled in me as a child that there was nothing more noble than serving Venezuela and I have dedicated my whole life to this. Currently, living in Spain, my limited possibilities focus on Venezuela and its future reconstruction, trying to coordinate efforts in that direction”, he concludes.