Alumni News

"Town Hall" consultations for development plans

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Alumni

2020 CMDP COVER RESIZE 50UP Mindanao constituents assembled on various occasions in recent months for online “town hall” consultations over various campus development plans. 

On July 21, a town hall consultation discussed a proposed City Hospital that the Davao City government wants to erect in the district, hopefully on the campus. Chancellor Digal narrated the origins of the proposal and how it could align with UP Mindanao’s mandates and plans for a Mindanao Health Initiatives, consisting of a proposed college of medicine and an infectious diseases research center. The chancellor also shared the support given by the UP System administration and President Danilo Concepcion, particularly the appointment of Executive Vice-President Teodoro Herbosa, a highly-placed medical professional, as the consultant to the hospital project, and the support of UP Manila Chancellor Carmencita Padilla and UP College of Medicine Dean Charlotte Chiong. The resulting discussion dwelled on the process by which UP Mindanao could manage the proposal.     

On October 6, the Office of the Chancellor organized a town hall consultation for the draft Campus Master Development Plan. Chancellor Digal provided the context through a presentation of his UP Mindanao Strategic Plan 2019-2023 and its three strategic themes: for students, “Molding Learners into Leaders;” for research “Transforming Insights into Impacts;” and “Building a Campus into a Community,” for university constituents and partners. The Campus Planning and Development Office presented the proposed land use plans for the campus and specific areas that were the subject of discussions. On October 9, the chancellor held a similar consultation for external stakeholders: UP Mindanao Foundation chairman Sebastian Angliongto and vice-chair John Gaisano, alumni Guido Alfredo Delgado and Harvey Lanticse, Department of Science and Technology-Region XI regional director Dr. Anthony Sales, the Department of Public Works and Highways officials, and Barangay Mintal Councilor Bargamento were among the participants.           

On October 12, the Department of Tourism - Region XI (DOT-XI) and UP Mindanao organized a town hall consultation for a proposed Arts and Culture Hub building and activity center that DOT-XI hopes to erect within the UP Mindanao campus. The project is a joint initiative of the DOT-XI and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA).  Both internal and external stakeholders of UP Mindanao listened to DOT-XI Regional Director Tanya Rabat-Tan and her team present the physical and financial plans, and artist Nestor Horfilla who presented the activity plans. Chancellor Larry Digal gave his review of the DOT-XI areas of activity that could fit UP Mindanao’s mandates and programs, namely, cultural village development, schools of living tradition, heritage education, heritage management, and creative industries. The DOST-XI director, Dr. Sales, suggested that the project look beyond the Davao region to the entire Mindanao and be part of an ecosystem of Mindanao cultural and social science networks.   

On October 14, 2020, at 1:00-4:00 PM, UP Mindanao will host an online forum on “Bridging the Health Care Gaps In Mindanao." Health officers and workers of various local government units and agencies in Mindanao and university constituents will attend. The consultation is part of the plan to establish the proposed UP Mindanao College of Medicine.

Participants in the various town hall consultations gave constructive suggestions and words of collective wisdom. The planners will incorporate the inputs into the revised plans, and the documentation of the consultations will ensure that the implementation process will reflect the various stakeholders’ sentiments and well-being in the future life of the development projects.


"Pagkilala sa UPMin Class of 2020"

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Alumni

118423801 4357911297614771 6858332153566495908 oRZD40"Pagkilala sa UPMin Class of 2020":
the online tribute to the Graduates of Academic Year 2019-2020.
Also available in PDF and EPUB versions.
Video presentation will premiere on 7 September 2020, 07:00 PM in UPMin's YouTube channel (
Paglingkuran ang Sambayanan!
Mabuhay ang Pag-asa ng Bayan!
Padayon, UPMin Class of 2020!
"Pagkilala" is a joint production by the Commencement Exercises Adhoc Committee, Office of the University Registrar, University Information Committee, BACMA Sibya Media Production Unit, Radyo Iskolar, and UP Salida.


Letter from the Chancellor: Bayanihan for our personnel

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Alumni

03 April 2020
Bayanihan for Our Non-Government Service, 
Security, and Sanitation Personnel
Dear UP Mindanao constituents,
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected the lives of many in our city; and with the impending implementation of the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) from 4 to 19 April 2020, all of us will be experiencing difficulty in terms of mobility and access to essentials such as food and medicine.   
As government employees, whether regular or UP contractual, we are fortunate to receive financial assistance from the university and the national government to help us during this time of difficulty. However, many of our frontliners like our security and sanitation personnel, as well as our non-government service (NGS) personnel, do not qualify for these benefits.
Currently, we have a total of 79 beneficiaries, comprising of 28 security and 15 sanitation personnel—one of them cooks for our students stranded in the dorm and nearby boarding houses—and 36 non-government service (NGS) personnel (7 of whom serve as part of the skeletal force).
Hence, during its 31 March 2020 special online meeting, the Executive Committee has committed to pool funds to provide financial support for them. We are extending this initiative to all of you so we can gather more and give more to our beneficiaries on top of the funds already solicited and distributed by the All UP Academic Employees Union.
If you wish to take part in this initiative, you may drop the amount at the designated drop box at Cash Office or deposit/transfer the amount to the DBP bank account of Ms. Emma Ruth Caalaman (account name) with account number 9155457539. For your convenience, you may register your DBP payroll account to perform online banking/fund transfer at
Periodic updates will be provided by the Vice Chancellor for Administration on the status of the fund drive.
Many of our frontliners and NGS staff have become an integral part of the UP Mindanao family. And as such, we cannot leave them behind in the midst of this pandemic. Let us join together in the spirit of bayanihan to help each and every single member of our community survive this pandemic.
Thank you for your generosity! Keep safe always!

Prof. Larry N. Digal, PhD

UP Mindanao Bulletin, 15 March-3 April 2020

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Alumni

15 March 2020–3 April 2020


“In the past two years, we have experienced major disruptions. Last year, we had to deal with the various earthquakes that hit Mindanao. This year, we—and the rest of the world—face another threat in the form of a pandemic caused by the coronavirus disease.
“What disruptive events such as this pandemic teaches us is the importance of focusing on what really matters. And right now, during this difficult time, what the university is focusing on is taking care of its constituents, particularly our students, our teaching and nonteaching staff, and our non-UP contractual staff.”
—Prof. Larry N. Digal, PhD, Chancellor
19 April 2020 | End of extended work and class suspension unless further extended, modified, or withdrawn
8 April 2020 | Deadline for submission of work accomplishment for 17–31 March 2020
4 April 2020 | Bayanihan for our non-government service, security, and sanitation personnel (Read letter here:
30 March–15 April 2020 | Ongoing work-from-home (WFH) training for all UP Mindanao personnel
We are currently working out a system for tracking the condition of UP Mindanao constituents, particularly students (through the Office of Student Affairs) and employees (through the Human Resource and Development Office). The tracker will go live in the next volume of the bulletin.
UP System Memoranda and Other Releases
03 April 2020 | Memorandum no. NGY 20-56. Submission of Work Accomplishment from 17–31 March 2020 and 1–14 April 2020.
02 April 2020 | UP System IT. Reminder on Secure Zoom Meeting Sessions. (Email sent to everyone)
25 March 2020 | Memorandum no. LGSB 2020-017. Submission of Project Proposals for UPSA Funding Request.
20 March 2020 | Memorandum no. OVPAA 2020-40. Payment of Salaries of Lecturers and Teaching Assistant/Teaching Fellows up to 15 April 2020.
17 March 2020 | UP System IT. Zoom Video Conferencing Access for UP Faculty and REPS. (Email sent to everyone)
17 March 2020 | Memorandum no. OVPAA 2020-39. Addendum to Memorandum no. OVPAA 2020-38 on the Suspension of Classes in All UP Constituent Universities Except UP Open University.
13 March 2020 | Memorandum no. NGY 2020-44. Implementation of Alternative Work Arrangement.
05 March 2020 | Memorandum no. NGY 2020-33. CSC Guidelines on the Procedure of Availment of Leave Privileges for Absences Incurred in Relation to Self-Quarantine and/or Treatment of Public Sector Officials and Employees Relative to COVID-19.
UP Mindanao Memoranda and Other Releases
2 April 2020 | Memorandum no. LND 2020-041. Extension of Work and Class Suspension until 19 April 2020 Unless Further Extended, Modified or Withdrawn.
1 April 2020 | Memorandum no. MTRE 2020-005. Misting/Disinfection of the City Health Office in UP Mindanao on 1 April 2020.
26 March 2020 | Memorandum no. LND 2020-40. Work-from-home (WFH) training for all UP Mindanao personnel from 30 March to 15 April 2020.
20 March 2020 | Memorandum no. LND 2020-034. Clarification on the Early Release of Salaries of Non-UP Contractual Personnel and Project-based Personnel.
19 March 2020 | Memorandum no. LND 2020-033. Skeletal Force During Community Quarantine and Possible Lockdown Due to COVID-19
18 March 2020 | Memorandum no. LND 2020-032. Work Arrangement During Community Quarantine Due to COVID-19
17 March 2020 | Memorandum no. LND 20200-031a. Early Release of Salaries of Regular and Non-UP Contractual Personnel and Project-based Personnel.
17 March 2020 | Memorandum no. LND 2020-031b. Requirements for Early Release of Salaries of Non-UP Contractual Personnel and Project-based Personnel.
17 March 2020 | Memorandum no. LND 2020-029. Release of P25K CNA incentive.
16 March 2020 | Memorandum no. LND 2020-028. Reiteration of the Suspension of Work and Cancellation of Classes.
16 March 2020 | Memorandum no. LND 2020-27A. Clarification on Memorandum no. LND-27, “Implementation of Alternative Work Arrangement in Relation to COVID-19 Code Red Sublevel 2 and Community Quarantine in Davao City”
15 March 2020 | Memorandum no. LND 2020-27. Implementation of alternative work arrangement in relation to COVID-19 Code Red Sublevel 2 and community quarantine in Davao City
13 March 2020 | Memorandum no. NBO 2020-16. Online mode of instruction.
02 April 2020 | SMAARDEC/PCAARRD Secretariat: 2020 Non-Degree Training Courses
Reference Materials

UP System Coronavirus advisories and prevention guidelines:

01 April 2020 | UP Philippine General Hospital Bayanihan Na! Operations Center is launched. Dial 155200 for assistance.
28 March 2020 | “Processing and release of 2020 UPCAT results suspended due to ECQ” (Philippine Daily Inquirer)
27 March 2020 | “Villanueva: State universities, colleges, need raw materials, support to continue initiatives against COVID-19” (Manila Bulletin).
26 March 2020 | “LGUs to support proposed laboratory" (The Mindanao Times).
26 March 2020 | “Call for volunteers for COVID-19 Testing Lab” (Philippine Genome Center-Mindanao).
26 March 2020 | UP Alumni Association Davao, Inc. has launched a donation drive to provision public health frontliners (UPMin Facebook page).
23 March 2020 | “UP Mindanao proposes diagnostic program to test for COVID-19 in Davao City” (Manila Bulletin).
20–28 March 2020 | Alumni, officials, staff, and students donated food and personal necessities for students stranded at the dormitory and nearby boarding houses (UPMin Facebook page).;; 
20 March 2020 | Launch of Online Portal of University of the Philippines CoViD-19 News and Information.
Rene Estremera
Public Relations Officer
Bayanihan Na Button 40 percent

The UP-PGH has launched Bayanihan Na! COVID-19 Operations Center! Call 155-200 for your questions about COVID-19 and how to volunteer and donate.

Full story here:

Visit to learn more about the operations center via UP Public Service 
IMG-1f32971a0eb73807b827d4b4d29127ca-V 50 percent
Dear fellow alumni and friends,
The effects of the COVID-19 virus has strained our health care system, particularly our health care frontliners: doctors, nurses, technicians, and hospital staff. Our health  frontliners need Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to continue working effectively to limit the spread of COVID-19. Hence, the UPAA Davao Chapter would like to ask your help in raising funds for provision of these PPE. While we are working on a dedicated bank account to receive all donations, we are using the account one of our UPAA-Davao directors. Please send your donations to: 
Atty. Marie Glenn C. Sorila
Metrobank Account No. 564-3-564-00734-0
 Email an image of your transaction slip to   
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UPMin Thank you message 3 40Sa mga UPMin officials, faculty, staff, students sa pangunguna ng University Student Council (USC), Association of the UP Beta Sigma Fraternity & the UP Sigma Beta Sorority (Betans) at iba pang student organizations, All UP Academic Employees Union, All UP Academic Employees Union-Mindanao, UP Mindanao Alumni Association (UPMinAA), UP Alumni Association-Davao Chapter (UPAA-Davao), UP Mindanao Foundation (UPMFI), at iba pang mga nakibahagi sa aming munting bayanihan para sa ating mga estudyante na kasalukuyang natigil sa Elias B. Lopez Hall dormitory at boarding houses dahil sa ipinatutupad na community quarantine sa siyudad ng Davao dulot ng panganib na dala ng COVID-19 ...


Mula sa Office of Student Affairs, University of the Philippines Mindanao


Message from UP President Danilo L. Concepcion
March 20, 2020
Dear members of the UP community:
I would like to express my sincere gratitude and appreciation to you all for your amazing response to this crisis—a global situation the likes of which we have not seen in our lifetimes. We have been forced to suspend classes, work and all other campus activities, and to stay inside our homes and practice social distancing, all to contain the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and to keep our healthcare system from being dangerously overwhelmed. For some of us, the effects of these measures on our finances, work, and social lives, and on our mental and physical health, have been devastating. 
Yet, I have seen UP rise magnificently to the challenge. Every constituent unit, every sector, and every member of the UP community has demonstrated and continues to demonstrate incredible courage, resourcefulness, intelligence, selflessness, and compassion. Our scientists have used their knowledge to help their fellow Filipinos. Our medical and health practitioners, including our interns, are serving heroically at the frontlines of this war. Our faculty are exploring new ways and alternative platforms to fulfill their mission to teach, no matter the circumstances.
Our skeleton staff are working to keep our University running and to protect our communities. Our administrative officials have been tirelessly steering the University through rough waters. And our students, alumni and campus residents are doing their part by using their training to build sanitation tents for public use, or by donating food and supplies to fellow members of the UP community in need, or by campaigning for support for our doctors, nurses and health centers, or by simply doing what they can to educate, to ease people’s burdens, and uplift their spirits.
You are all an inspiration to us. Ang iskolar ng bayan ay tunay na maaasahan.
I cannot say for certain how the future will be shaped by this global crisis. However, I can assure you that we will keep moving forward as one UP community. We will continue to harness the expertise of the country’s premier community of scholars to make thoughtful and informed decisions. We will continue to communicate with you and disseminate information as often as possible. We will support your efforts to help yourselves, your families and your communities. Together, we will emerge stronger, better, and more united than ever.
We must and will remain in touch with one another. To facilitate this and to make sure that we disseminate and receive only official and verified information at a time when misleading and even dangerous rumors abound, we are opening a dedicated webpage at for the UP community. I urge you to bookmark and to follow that page for future announcements and updates, and stay safe.
Once again, I thank all the individuals and teams who are toiling bravely through this uncertain time. Thank you for showing the world what honor and excellence in the service of the Filipino people truly mean.
Maraming salamat po.
Danilo L. Concepcion


Call for volunteers for a CoViD-19 testing lab

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Alumni

The Philippine Genome Center-Mindanao has issued a call for volunteers who are willing to work in a CoViD-19 diagnostic laboratory in Davao del Norte. Persons who wish to participate need to have experience in RNA/PCR/qPCR and are willing to work in Davao del Norte. Qualified persons may indicate their interest by filling up the survey form at Deadline is 26 March 2020.

This call is URGENT. Davao Region has not reached its CoViD-19 peak, hence the operationalization of the lab is urgent to prevent the spread of CoViD-19 in the region.


Davao del Norte supports UP Mindanao proposal on diagnostics program for COVID-19 testing
The diagnostic lab for COVID-19 free testing proposed by the University of the Philippines (UP) Mindanao has gathered immediate interest from the Davao del Norte province. In a joint letter to UP Mindanao dated March 22, provincial governor Edwin Jubahib and Tagum City mayor Allan Rellon wrote, “As local chief executives, we hereby commit and support your proposal to establish a mobile diagnostics laboratory for rapid medical and public health response to COVID-19 in the province.”
Philippine Genome Center-Mindanao director Dr. Lyre Anni Murao, a professor of virology at UP Mindanao, revealed that the construction of the proposed lab and procurement of needed equipment, estimated at P15 million, will be funded by private groups while the operational costs, pegged at P10.3 million per month, will be funded by the local government unit.

“Our partners from the private sector will take charge of designing the lab to ensure it will meet biosafety standards,” she said. “The entire laboratory establishment including accreditation, design and assembly, up to equipment installation and calibration, will take roughly 7 to 8 weeks. When running at full capacity, the lab can be expected to handle 96 tests per day.”

Based on previous discussion with the Department of Health (DOH), the proposed lab will likely be attached to the Davao Region Medical Center (DRMC) in Tagum City according to UP Mindanao chancellor Dr. Larry Digal.

“DOH XI welcomed the idea of setting the lab with DRMC to supplement the capacity of SPMC so that other provinces in the Davao Region and even outside the region can be better served,” he said. “We are now working closely with the DavNor LGU on how to set up this lab as soon as possible. But just like the case of Marikina, the facility will have to be assessed by the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine [RITM] of the DOH before it can be operational.”

Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC) Dr. Leopoldo Vega has suggested during the Philippine Information Agency online press conference yesterday for UP Mindanao “to be an independent lab” since it will take time for DOH System and UP System to sign a memorandum of agreement.

He said, “Just make sure you have the necessary accreditation. This is a molecular biology lab. There has to be a standard, protective room with negative pressure so that safety is there when they inactivate the virus. If they have that, I think the RITM would give their approval.”

To augment the personnel who will initially operate the proposed lab, PGC Mindanao has already issued a call for volunteers last March 24. Dr. Murao said, “We cannot rely fully on our partner hospital to free up their personnel to do COVID-19 tests because they are needed in other hospital operations. We need volunteers with background on molecular biology, which is crucial to process the samples.”

Volunteers must have experience on quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) or ribonucleic acid procedures and are willing to be deployed in Davao del Norte. The survey form is available here:

“While we already included in our initial proposal to the LGU funding to take care of our volunteers (i.e., compensation, accommodations, etc.), we are now crafting a separate proposal for a rigorous training on biosafety and molecular diagnostics to ensure the welfare of our volunteers. This will be submitted to the UP System for funding,” she added.
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