Argentina’s efforts to promote students’ admission to UTN

More than 16,000 candidates applied to be admitted to study engineering at UTN throughout the country in 2018. On average, female applicants account for 20% of the total.

Publicada el 27 de agosto de 2018

The need to train more engineers is pressing and fundamental in order to face challenges related to the development of the national productive matrix. In this context, UTN, the only University exclusively committed to Engineering education, has been carrying out diverse actions evidencing the commitment of each Facultad Regional in view of the lack of engineering professionals.

Due to those actions, 16,000 candidates applied to study engineering in one of the 30 UTN’s Facultades Regionales in 2018. On average, women account for 20% of the applicants.


Mass media

All the Facultades Regionales consulted ensure that they implemented action plans of communication aimed at catching the attention of students who are finishing high school. These action plans focus mainly on the management of social networks, the design of their own contents, press releases in local and regional media promoting engineering programs, or the visibilization of success stories.

In Facultad Regional Trenque Lauquen, thanks to these strategies, the number of applicants increased by 20%. In turn, in Facultad Regional Mar del Plata, 40% of the applicants learned about the Facultad Regional and the undergraduate programs offered by means of a strong action plan carried out through social networks. “This result provides us with the guidelines to work more on these direct marketing methods.”

Open doors

In the last few years, another action promoted from UTN’s Facultades Regionales has been the visit of High School students to the University. This is being promoted in Facultad Regional Concordia, where the “Meet UTN” action plan was implemented. This program offers a visit of regional High School students who are in the last years of studies. They offer an orientation talk about the courses and a tour around the premises so that the students can see the classrooms and the laboratories. The authorities of the Facultad Regional said that “it has been a successful promotion: the number of admitted students increases every year, together with the recognition of the institution by the society.”

Facultad Regional Venado Tuerto, in turn, also organized visits for High School students to the university and included talks, tours around the laboratories, and workshops. “The participation of the School in regional expositions has also had a good impact,” they stated.

Something similar occurred in Facultad Regional San Francisco, where open door events, courses and technical workshops for students in the final years of the high school period, and the opening of the School’s laboratories, were organized so that they could visit it to know the premises. These events have also taken place in regional and city education expositions as well as in visits to schools. In addition, activities with primary schools were promoted, such as robotics workshops and the science interactive museum (CONCIENCIA). “All these activities had a positive result, some of them, in the medium term. The number of candidates has increasingly grown in the last few years; measuredly but without ups and downs,” they concluded.

In addition, Facultad Regional Neuquén has implemented an outreach program with regional schools called “The School opens the door to the community”, aimed at articulating university with regional high schools; undergraduate students and graduates voluntarily gather and share their positive experiences with high school students.

In addition, they organize guided visits for high schools students and teachers from Neuquén and Río Negro and carry out hand-on experiments in the Electronics, Chemistry and Environmental laboratories. “This program has yielded the expected results; that is, students visiting us from other places of the region,” they pointed out.

In Facultad Regional Delta, an event called “A University Day” is organized, where young people have an experiential activity to learn about the School. This policy, in addition to the advertising campaigns carried out by the communication area, has paid off. “The results have met and exceeded our expectations, increasing the number of candidates compared to the previous year,” they stated.

Members of Facultad Regional Villa María participated in fairs and educational exhibitions in the city and the region in 2017. They also visited schools and received students from high schools. They prepared graphic and audiovisual information material about the existing academic offering. They said that they were able to maintain the number of first year students, with similar figures to those recorded in the previous four years.

Members of Facultad Regional Tierra del Fuego also visit schools and invite students to tour around the premises. The particular aspect -they pointed out- is that rather than being in charge of authorities or non-faculty, the visits are in charge of students and graduates so that they can also transmit their academic experience: how to cope with the course; how to organize schedules; how to work and study simultaneously; among other issues.

 “This was an enriching activity and we think that it has impacted favorably in the admission to the courses this year,” they concluded.

Facultad Regional Mendoza also organizes those types of events and the so called “Technological Educational Offering” aimed at providing information and talks about the courses taught in the School.

UTN Facultad Regional Reconquista has designed an integral program  including: the participation in regional Engineering Courses Fairs; visits to regional schools; the organization of the “University Doors Open” day receiving high school students; and the publicity in social media and networks. It is estimated that the School made itself known to approximately 3400 young students from General Obligado, Vera and 9 de Julio.

On the other hand, Facultad Regional Bahía Blanca is working on the University-Secondary Schools Articulation NEXOS program, from the Argentine Ministry of Education’s University Policy Office. Authorities from Facultad Regional Bahía Blanca ensured that they have also strengthened promotion strategies for the study of technical university courses related to production, science and technology.


Facultad Regional Concepción del Uruguay, the areas of Pedagogy counseling and Communication worked in different places in the Province of Entre Ríos organizing talks and workshops in High Schools and Undergraduate Courses Fairs. “The University Seminar is considered an adaptation period to concepts and mainly to aptitudes and knowledge. During this period, we work in commissions divided by undergraduate program, in charge of the Pedagogical Counseling staff, teaching assistants from the Basic Sciences Department and Engineering professionals who are in charge of the mathematics and physics classes with a specific orientation to the engineering degree programs, -they informed-. We offer Academic and Motivational Tutors who are advanced students in each undergraduate program, who accompany the admitted students in problem-solving, in extra-classroom work, and in participation in experiences related to his undergraduate course such as: visits to the laboratories and meetings with faculty and with graduates.”

Facultad Regional San Nicolás, in turn, was able to improve retention rates in the Introductory Seminar due to the incorporation of tutors. Course didactic material was updated, and digitalized material was designed for high schools, thus contributing to articulation. In addition, training courses for high school teachers were carried out and visits to regional schools were organized so as to spread the academic offering, as well as tours around the School’s laboratories for primary and high schools to bring them closer to the real context of engineering education.

Other resources

UTN Santa Fe, where levelling and admission courses have multiple formats, implemented novel strategies in 2017.  One of them was a Workshop on Physico-mathematics aimed at motivating students, incorporating computer tools (Geogebra) and supporting the learning of both disciplines.