Prometeus is a community programme through which the Neighbourhood Plan and Barcelona Science and Universities ensure that all young people from public secondary schools in neighbourhoods with below-average university attendance rates can access academic institutions and successfully pursue higher education, regardless of economic and social conditions.
Originating in the 2016-17 academic year as a community project in Barcelona's Raval, the initiative is now a programme that forms part of the Neighbourhood Plan and is coordinated jointly with Barcelona Science and Universities, the Education Consortium, as well as the city's districts and public universities.
From the outset, it has proved to be a successful programme, and it is for this reason that the Neighbourhood Plan (2016-2020), in collaboration with Barcelona Science and Universities, has adopted it as its own and provided it with economic and human resources to consolidate it and extend it to other neighbourhoods in the city with similar characteristics. For all these reasons, Prometeus is today one of the key programmes in the field of education, thanks to the networking of organisations, educational and social agents and volunteers.
The programme includes a professional team that accompanies the students and has a financial endowment that responds to specific needs in terms of transport, academic reinforcement and material, among others. This personalised accompaniment begins at secondary school and continues beyond university graduation.
When they complete the University Entrance Exams (PAU), they receive support in the transition process towards university, which includes enrolment and the application for public grants. Throughout the years of their university studies, students are also accompanied in order to successfully complete their studies. Likewise, in the last phase of the programme, access to the world of work, support continues to be provided with the collaboration of the universities and Barcelona Activa, among others.
Role of the universities
Prometeus has the participation of the University of Barcelona (UB), the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB), the Polytechnic University of Catalonia (UPC) and the Pompeu Fabra University (UPF).
The increase in the number of Prometheus students in the universities and their educational success has been accompanied by an increasingly intense and systematic dedication on the part of all of them, as can be seen in the growing number of people, services and units involved in each university, as well as in the increase of their own resources specifically aimed at Prometheus students, such as part of the salary scholarships of the UPF, the UPC and the UAB.
During the university period, the young Prometeus students receive academic and personal support and monitoring at all times from the people in charge of the programme, in close collaboration with the universities. At the same time, they join ranks, accompany each other, share experiences and actively participate in the motivational talks that are regularly held in the high schools to motivate students to continue studying and attract their attention to the programme. In this way, they become role models in their neighbourhood and reinforce their educational imaginary as a core value of the programme.
Extension of the programme
After its launch in 2016-17, Prometeus was extended through two extensions. With the second extension, in 2022, the programme will reach the following eight secondary schools in seven Barcelona neighbourhoods, with the participation of the Asociación Educativa Integral del Raval and the university social volunteer organisation AFEV:
- El Raval: Milà i Fontanals Secondary School and Miquel Taradell Secondary School.
- Poble Sec: Consell de Cent Secondary School.
- Besòs and Maresme: Besòs Neighbourhood Secondary School.
- La Verneda and La Paz: Bernat Metge Secondary School.
- Torre Barón: Pablo Ruiz Picasso Secondary School.
- Vilapicina and Torre Llobeta: Barcelona Congrés Secondary School.
- Puerta: Flos and Calcat secondary schools.
2021-22 academic year
In the 2021-22 academic year, 159 young people (99 girls and 60 boys) will participate in the programme, 50 more than in the 2020-21 academic year. In addition, in autumn 2021, fifteen young people from Raval completed their university studies thanks to the Prometeus programme. This was the first group of young Prometeus students to finish their studies, who entered the programme while they were still studying at Institut Milà i Fontanals and Institut Miquel Tarradell.