Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro

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Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro
Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro
Coat of arms of the university
Motto Alis Grave Nil
Motto in English
With wings, nothing is heavy
Established October 30, 1940[1]
Type Private, non-profit
Affiliation Roman Catholic Church and Society of Jesus
Chancellor Orani João Tempesta, O. Cist.
Rector Josafá Carlos de Siqueira, S.J.
Vice rector Francisco Ivern Simó, S.J.
Academic staff
Students 17,900
Undergraduates 10,400
Postgraduates 7,500
Location Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil
Campus Urban
Colors Yellow and Blue
Website http://www.puc-rio.br

The Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro (Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, PUC-Rio) is a Catholic university in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It is the joint responsibility of the Catholic Archdiocese of Rio de Janeiro and the Society of Jesus.


The University was created in 1941 by the Society of Jesus to emphasize humanistic values in the pursuit of knowledge. PUC-Rio has 12,000 undergraduate students, 2,500 graduate students, and 4,000 extension students. In 2009 it ranked first among 2,252 higher education institutions in Brazil on ENADE, a benchmark exercise run by the Brazilian Ministry of Education.[3][4]

PUC-Rio has highly accredited faculties in Law, Engineering, Computer science, Psychology, Economics, Business, and International Relations.[5] It fosters cultural diversity in its student body. It has participated in exchange programs with Harvard, Notre Dame, UC Berkeley, UCLA, Brown University as well as European universities, with hundreds of students participating each year.[citation needed]


PUC-Rio is located in Gávea[6] in the south of Rio, at the edge of Tijuca National Forest. The campus was once a coffee farm. A creek crossed by three bridges runs through the campus. Tree-covered hills form a backdrop for the campus. Several city bus lines pass the university, which is near the up-scale neighborhoods of Leblon, Ipanema, Jardim Botânico, and Lagoa. Metrô busses connect the campus to the General Osório station in Ipanema and the Botafogo subway station on Botafogo beach.


Main building
The church of the Sacred-Heart of the PUC

The campus was built with donations from institutions and foundations in the early 1940s. Later the USA during President John Kennedy's administration donated a building now named after him. Besides the Central Library there are three specialized library. Rio Datacentro (RDC), named for the first internet provider in Brazil, includes a server and graphics-computing center, and extends terminal and wireless access campuswide.

Solar Grandjean de Montigny, PUC-Rio's Cultural Center, has visual arts exhibitions all year round. Pilotis (Kennedy building's ground floor) hosts cultural events such as political debates, shows, and fairs. The "Festa Junina" each June features folkloric food, costumes, and dance from old Brazil.

The campus also hosts three restaurants, five coffee-shops, a pizza-parlor, a bookstore, an office supply store, copy centers, branches of Banco Itaú and Banco Santander Brasil, a post office, a newsstand, and ATMs. The neighborhood of the university contains more shops, banks, the Planetarium, specialized bookstores, restaurants, and a mall. The Botanical Gardens and Leblon beach are within walking distance.


The Lua programming language was developed by Roberto Ierusalimschy, Luiz Henrique de Figueiredo, and Waldemar Celes, members of the Computer Graphics Technology Group[7] at PUC-Rio, beginning in 1993.

Notable alumni[edit]

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Coordinates: 22°58′45.48″S 43°13′56.82″W / 22.9793000°S 43.2324500°W / -22.9793000; -43.2324500