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Yovani Villanueva, graduated from the Mathematics program, obtained a full scholarship to carry out his doctoral studies at the Federal University of Goias, in Brazil.


Yovani Villanueva says that on his bicycle he could have go around the world twice. With a cheerful look, a few concise words and a unique brain, this Sergista earned a scholarship for doctoral studies in Mathematics at the Federal University of Goias, one of the best renowned institutions in Brazil.

Mathematics is another of his passions added to cycling, reading and music. Since he began his studies in 2008, Yovani decided to follow the steps of the highest Colombian scientists…He dreams of one day working at NASA. “ FundaColombia gave me a full scholarship when I began to study at the University. This organization took into account my school performance and the scores in the Saber Pro test. I also received support from La Sergio through its programs of scholarships and young researchers”, says Yovani while he watches the new students walking in front of the Library.

With professor Luz Miryam Echeverri, we modeled positioning and trajectories. When I was studying at La Sergio, I learned from demanding teachers who taught me to investigate, to go further and that was how I acquired a greater sense of responsibility while consolidating the feeling of belonging to Sergio Arboleda University”, says Villanueva.

From his first years at the University, this graduate recalled that it was in 2009 when he discovered his love for the bicycle. “At first, I did it to support financially my family. I lived in Perdomo, a neighborhood in Bogotá, and the route was long, but then I got used to do it. With practice I discovered that I could not live without my bike.

His abilities as a researcher, teacher and his human quality do not go unnoticed. With a large resume, already in the Colciencias record, Yovani won a scholarship to study his master’s degree at the Federal University of Goias. Later, after sustaining his thesis, he returned to Colombia to work as a university teacher and he applied for a PhD scholarship at the same Brazilian university and he was selected.

The training that I received by Jorge Solís, Ronald Hurtado and other professors was fundamental for my life project. With them I learned to develop a series of advances necessary to work the altitude, the weight, energy consumption and heat that would support the project of the satellite ‘Libertad 2’ ”, added the graduate.

A triumph as a teacher

Winning a scholarship requires a lot of effort but, after talking with Yovani, it is clear that someone with his skills and dedication can achieve such a big merit with a relative ease. His story is that of many Sergistas who, after responding to the highest demand, they discover that they can always give more.

The anecdote of the day when I presented the exam for the PhD scholarship is quite funny. I was to give classes at the Universidad Distrital from six in the morning to twelve. The exam was scheduled for 8:00 a.m., Brazil time, but due to the time difference I had to do it since 6:00 a.m. I had assigned my students a workshop and while they were doing it, I was solving my exam. At some point a student came to ask me something and when he saw my test, he laughed and said: “Teacher, your exam is more difficult than our workshop”. It was also very strange that a professor supervised me during the test, but in the end was him who helped me to solve my students’ doubts”, continues Yovani in a simple way and with a big smile, product of his memories of the exam.

What a mathematician likes

I won the scholarship but I will not be able to go to the Radiohead concert in Bogotá”, says Yovani a little bit distressed because he is a rock fan, especially of the alternative subgenre. “Maybe I will go to Rock in Rio or, why not, to another rock concert in Brazil, for now I should focus on following my dreams.

The aerospace topics are the ones that he likes the most, for that reason he has a book collection of the aerial phenomena and the advanced technologies that would allow faster movements around the Universe. “I love investigative literature, supernatural stories and particularly military history”, he said.

“Sergistas, follow your dreams”

For Yovani there are no impossible, so at the end of the interview he wanted to give a concrete message to the other Sergistas: “You can fulfill your dreams if you work hard. The University offers many spaces to develop yourselves as professionals and as people, but the most important thing is that you have your goals clear and that you have to fight for them”.

At the end of February, Yovani must travel to Brazil to begin his doctoral studies in Mathematics. There he will continue his research in the subject outlined in his master: dynamical systems from pure mathematics, differential topology work, theory of singularities and qualitative theory of differential equations with its applications to celestial mechanics and circuits, something to study while listening to Radiohead.

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