One of the most important roles of the Office of the Provost for Culture and Extension – “Pró- Reitoria de Cultura e Extensão Universitária” (PRCEU) is making the faculty members become aware of the social expectations so they can conciliate methodological severity with social relevance in their research. It is also PRCEU who plans, coordinates and executes the events of the culture and extension areas inside the University of São Paulo through its eleven institutions, programs, and projects. For the activities carried out in the Educational Units, Specialized Instituts and Museums, the Pró-Reitoria performs as an inductor, as well as a normative and fostering institution. Furthermore, the mission of PRCEU revolves around the dissemination, within its scope, of the essential values in academic life, emphasizing, among these values, the continuous diligence in the excellence of its relations with society.
Cultural and extension activities require, by their very nature, full synchrony with these values and with the community expectations. The guiding premises of its work are determined based on this concept and approved by its respective Central Council, the CoCEx.
In the university extension and culture areas these premises are:
- to mobilize students of the community for new forms of artistic and cultural manifestations;
- to stimulate external participation, through Advisory Councils, in all of the Pró-Reitoria‘s institutions;
- to develop joint activities with Teaching and Research Units, Specialized Instituts and Museums, based on the understanding that these are specialized and dynamic research centers that help in analyzing the past, understanding the contemporary and thinking about the future;
- to adopt a critical attitude about mass media, given its important role in cultural creation in Brazilian and Latin American societies.
The university extension is a credential of excellence because only universities with history and high-quality rates in the fields of research and education can transmit to society – in the forms of services and teaching – the knowledge accumulated in every field. It is the aspect that best defines the profile of a public university, which is perceived as an institution that is supposed to serve the collectivity. However, the university extension still lacks recognition, partially for not being effectively defined in the University’s regimental diplomas as a practice in the academic works of the departments.