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Investiture Speech of Chancellor Larry N. Digal, Ph.D.

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Forums

I.The Journey
 
I remember when I was standing in the same shoes as you are now, the graduating class of 2019. It was 1985. Many of you weren’t even born yet. I just graduated from the University of the Philippines Los Baños with a degree in Agriculture, major in Agricultural Economics and Agri-Finance. 
 
My dream then was simple. I wanted to teach in UP, to join the faculty of the College of Development Economics and Management in UP Los Baños. And so the first step was straightforward enough. The day after my graduation, I started work as a research assistant for a project of my thesis supervisor Dr Generoso Octavio in the Department of Agricultural Economics. And that day, I had one foot in the door, and I believed I made one small step towards my dream.   
 
A year later, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to get a master’s degree in Agricultural Economics from Purdue University in the United States through a research assistantship and a scholarship from Rotary International. The College of Development Economics and Management offered me a teaching position after earning the degree. Naturally, I was ecstatic, flattered that I was being considered for the position. And so I accepted the offer. I was getting ready to take two steps inside the door and towards my dream. 
 
But after I got the degree, things took a turn. As they say, “The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” Instead of following my dream and teach in UP Los Baños, I chose instead to work in Davao to be closer to my family. I walked out of the door and it closed with a bang. After that, I devoted five years of my life working in the private sector and four years at the Department of Trade and Industry. Life was good. I taught part-time at another university, and I slowly forgot my desire to teach in UP. 
 
But in 1997, I was given an opportunity, through a scholarship, to study for a PhD in Agricultural Economics at the University of Sydney in Australia. But life was tough after finishing my PhD degree and returning to Davao. I had to raise three small kids on my own. I had to seek help from my parents and siblings. To me, this underscored the importance of finding a job that had flexible hours, so that I could devote some of my time for my children. And that year, I got an offer to teach in UP Mindanao. Finally, after 13 years of wandering, another door has opened, another chance at making my dream come true. 
 
But a few weeks after I joined UP Mindanao, I was told that the BS Economics program of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences was going to be abolished. I was offered to teach at the School of Economics in UP Diliman, but this posed a big problem: I did not want to uproot my kids and bring them to Manila. So I remained in Davao. I resigned from UP Mindanao and got another job in the private sector.  Another door closed. 
 
However, a few months later, the former chancellor, Dr. Sylvia Concepcion, who was dean of the School of Management that time, opened a window for me to climb into. She offered me a position to teach under the Master in Management program. When I eventually became dean of the School of Management in 2003, we revised the former BS Economics program to the BS Agribusiness Economics program, transferring it from the College of Humanities and Social Sciences to the School of Management, shaping it based on our expertise and making it more relevant to the needs of Mindanao.
 
As I reflect on the journey that led to me assuming this responsibility as the fifth chancellor of UP Mindanao, I realize two things: first, the importance of dreams; and second, the power of timing. 
 
I remember when I was in Purdue, one of my closest friends asked me about my plans after getting my masters. I said, “I’m going to teach in UP.” I was very sure then. And he said, “Ayaw mong maging dean?” Back then, I could not fathom being dean. Ano pa kaya ang maging chancellor? Like I said, my dream was simple. But having that simple dream has led me to where I am now. 
 
After missing two opportunities to teach in UP, I never thought that a third chance was possible. But I happened to be at the right place and the right time. I had grown, and I was ready for it. I had a doctorate degree and rich industry exposure. Though the dream took 13 years in the making, it was worth the wait. God prepared me so that UP Min could be the place for me to share my talents, and to be surrounded by my family and those who are important to me. God was actually preparing me for a bigger role beyond my imagination.
 
 
 
II.The Dream
 
Mindanao is known as “the Land of Promise.” A land rich in natural resources. The food basket of the country. A land diverse in cultures. Home to the tri-people of Mindanao: the Lumads or indigenous peoples, the Muslims, and the various Christian settlers who have trickled slowly into these frontier lands, lured by the promise of prosperity. But over the years, Mindanao has been beset with various challenges―high poverty incidences, armed conflict and violence, just to name a few. 
 
But how does one bring this so-called promise into fulfillment? It is perhaps this same question that weighed heavily in the minds of UP alumni in 1949, when they first voiced their desire to bring UP’s brand of excellence to Mindanao. This was their dream. Forty years later, they scored a major victory when a resolution for the establishment of UP in Mindanao emanated from the 12th UP Alumni Institute Assembly hosted by the UP Alumni Association–Davao Chapter. The many years of lobbying by UP’s alumni and the hard work of our Mindanawon lawmakers led to President Fidel V. Ramos signing into law Republic Act 7889, “An Act Creating the University of the Philippines in Mindanao,” on the 20th of February 1995. 
 
By virtue of this law, UP Mindanao, the sixth constituent university of the UP System, was mandated to offer academic programs “on science, technology and agricultural education,” “provide a special scholarship program and other affirmative action programs to assist poor but deserving Muslims and other members of cultural communities to qualify for admission to the University,” and “network and collaborate with other state college and universities in such areas which shall contribute to the development of Mindanao.”
 
And even with the passing of RA 7500 or “The UP Charter of 2008,” which elevated UP as the national university and mandated it to become “a graduate university,” “a research university,” “a public service university,” and “a regional and global university,” our initial mandates have not been erased. It is the interweaving of both these laws, these various mandates, that gives UP Mindanao its uniqueness and a greater purpose not only in the Philippine south, but also in the ASEAN region, particularly in the Brunei-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area or the BIMP-EAGA.
 
Given this mandate, what is our dream for UP Mindanao? 
 
First, the dream is for UP Mindanao to contribute more to Mindanao development. UP Mindanao is committed to becoming Mindanao-focused but adopting an international outlook. What does this mean? It means that as a UP constituent university in Mindanao, the university shall focus its intellectual resources to provide quality education, research and development, and public service that can contribute to the sustainable development of Mindanao. However, it shall orient itself using an international outlook with the university bringing the best of the world to Mindanao and the best of Mindanao to the rest of the world.
 
Guided by the principle of strengthening the teaching-research-extension-production continuum, UP Mindanao shall focus on three priority programs: 
 
a)Sustainable Agri- and Biosystems for Mindanao to promote responsible use of bioresources with an eye towards improving agricultural productivity balanced with environmental nurturance and inclusive and equitable socio-economic growth; 
b)Mindanao Arts and Cultures to tap into the colorful tapestry of arts and cultures among the tri-people of Mindanao as a means of exploring Mindanawon identity; and
c)Mindanao Sports Development Program to complement the Davao City-UP Sports Complex and develop world-class athletes from Mindanao, with the goal of establishing a College of Human Kinetics in the future.  
 
Under these programs, we will expand our academic offerings by instituting and developing new undergraduate and graduate programs, including a PhD by Research and Dual PhD degrees through partnership agreements with foreign universities.  
 
UP Mindanao has started establishing the Center for the Advancement of Research, development, and engagement in Mindanao or CARIM, which will effectively connect the university’s R&D with its public service and serve as a hub for RDE collaboration and networking with local and international partners. The Center will also promote the university’s knowledge products to generate intellectual property for industries and policies for government, which can contribute towards addressing the gaps in the sustainable development goals (SDGs) of Mindanao. 
 
To support this dream, we will need budget for infrastructure development. We need more classrooms, laboratories, and facilities. Of the 203-hectare land allotted for the campus, approximately 20 percent are built up at present. We need a Comprehensive Campus Development Program in order to complete the Davao City-UP Sports Complex, the RDE complex with the CARIM facility (with the proposed Mindanao International Convention Center), and the various academic complexes for CSM, CHSS, and SOM; as well as establish a world-class Botanical Garden in partnership with the Davao City government. 
 
On top of infrastructure, we will need more people to support our programs. We need more plantilla items for additional faculty members to teach courses in new academic programs and for support staff to handle an increase in instruction, research, and public service activities. Furthermore, we will need funding for human resource development of existing academic and support staff so that they can effectively respond to the demands of our envisioned expansion.
 
Second, the dream is for UP Mindanao to provide equitable access to quality education for all. With the passing of RA 10931 or the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act, undergraduate students may now avail of free tuition and exemption from other fees in a state university such as UP. However, other barriers to education still exist, such as poor quality of secondary education, geographical challenges, and lack of resources for daily living, just to name a few.
 
To address these barriers, we are currently studying our enrollment data to get baseline information on the number of students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds and those belonging to Muslim and Lumad cultural communities. Based on the data, we will be coming up with appropriate strategies to address these barriers through our recently revived Pahinungod volunteer program and currently existing scholarship grants. 
 
We are also looking for ways to use digital technologies to promote self-learning among students and adult professionals and encourage life-long learning. With the wealth of intellectual resources in the university, UP Mindanao aims to use the Internet to widen the reach of the university beyond the walls of the classroom and the perimeter of the campus.
 
Third, the dream is for UP Mindanao to become a hub for collaboration in various levels. UP Mindanao has the distinct advantage of being part of the University of the Philippines System, which means that we can tap the knowledge base in other constituent universities to supplement our own. For example, when the Philippine Genome Center established its Mindanao Satellite Office here in UP Mindanao, it opened various opportunities for researchers not only in UP Mindanao but also other institutions in the island. The establishment of the UP Professional Schools in Agriculture and the Environment in Panabo by the UP Los Baños Graduate School has has opened doors for potential synergistic partnerships that UP Mindanao can enter into with other UP constituent universities wishing to expand their services and offerings here in Mindanao.
 
We will also be strengthening our partnerships with other higher education institutions, industries, and government institutions in terms of instruction, research, and public service. For we believe that it is through concerted efforts with our partners that we can bring about positive change in Mindanao and the rest of the country. 
 
III.Timing
 
About 17 years ago, I raised the issue of absorptive capacity to our UP System officials, where demand for our services exceed supply of resources and, hence, limits our ability to respond to these opportunities. Given the limited resources of UP Mindanao, it is important to focus on strategic areas where we have the capacity and the best chance to make a difference in carrying out our mandate and maximizing our impact to our stakeholders.
  
But while we will continue to ask support from the UP System and the Department of Budget and Management for our much-needed resources such as plantilla items for academic and administrative staff and budget for our expansion plans, we would also like to explore a different strategy—that is, mobilizing our alumni group to partner with us to advocate for the support of UP Mindanao expansion programs to help accelerate the development and growth of Mindanao. In October this year, we will present our expansion plans in the Regional Alumni Institute Assembly to be organized by the UP Mindanao Foundation Inc. and the UP Alumni Association (Davao Chapter) in partnership with UP Mindanao. Yes, this is the same assembly that first sparked the dream of having a UP here in Mindanao.
 
We plan to invite members of Senate and Congress who can be our champion in the legislative halls and create a bill to fund our expansion programs. We will also invite key heads of agencies, particularly from the Department of Science and Technology, the Department of Agriculture, and the Department of Tourism, just to name a few, who can support aspects of our expansion program. We hope that through this Regional Alumni Institute Assembly, the UP alumni can come up with resolutions that we can present to President Rodrigo Duterte, or his representative, for action.
 
Our message in the Regional Alumni Institute Assembly this October should be clear: that investing in UP Mindanao is necessary so that it will have the critical mass to successfully respond to opportunities, help attain inclusive and sustainable development in Mindanao, and contribute to nation building.
 
 
IV.Open Door
 
As UP Mindanao prepares to celebrate its 25th Founding Anniversary next year, in February 2020, let us all remember the humble beginnings of this university. A university dreamed into existence through the lobbying of fervent UP alumni and the work of Mindanawon lawmakers. They had a dream, and with the right timing and hard work, they were able to turn their dream into a reality. 
 
When the university first began in 1995, UP Mindanao had 3 employees occupying rented office spaces in the downtown area of Davao City. Now, the university has expanded with 173 faculty and staff holding offices in 8 buildings on a 203-hectare campus in Mintal. 
 
Before, we had to travel through the boulder-strewn access road formerly known as the “abortion road.” Now, the road has since been concreted and an internal road network constructed. 
 
When it first opened its doors in 1996, UP Mindanao welcomed its first 167 students. Since then, the university has graduated more than 3,000 students across various degree programs in the three colleges of the university. And these graduates are now serving as public officials and civil servants, writers and communicators, lawyers, doctors, educators, entrepreneurs, and professionals, making a mark in government, industry, and civil societies. 
 
You, too, the graduating class of 2019, will join their ranks. Ang mga isko at iska ng bayan. When you leave the university, I hope you, too, will continue the tradition of honor and excellence and service to the country and Mindanao as many have done before you. Always make us proud.
 
But I have one request: wherever you may find yourself years from now, remember to reconnect with UP Mindanao―physically, digitally, spiritually. The doors of this university will always remain open to physically welcome you back. And we will strengthen our online presence so that you will always have a direct line to the university wherever you are in the world.  Remember that this place will always be a part of you, and you will always be a part of this place.  For no matter the various differences that might divide us―such is the case in a university that promotes critical thinking, where passionate individuals cultivate strong opinions and deep learning―one thing connects us all: lahat tayo mahal ang bayan at ang Unibersidad ng Pilipinas!     
 
Daghang salamat ug madayaw na buntag kanatong tanan!

Highlights in May, 2019

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Forums

MEMORANDUM OF AGREEMENT WITH MONDE NISSIN CORP.

The University of the Philippines (UP) Mindanao entered into a Memorandum of Agreement with Monde Nissin Corporation recently for the research, development, and industrial use of Direct Lactic Acid Technology, which can contribute to sustainable production and consumption and other sustainable development goals. UP Mindanao Chancellor Larry Digal and Monde Nissin Executive Vice President Henry Soesanto signed the agreement. With Monde Nissin as an industry partner, UP Mindanao was able to secure funding from the Department of Science and Technology’s Collaborative Research And Development to Leverage the Economy (CRADLE) Program. In the agreement UP Mindanao will pursue further development of its DOST-funded CRADLE project titled, “Fermentation and Purification Research to Produce Food-Grade, Pharmaceutical-Grade and Polymer-Grade Lactic Acid.” Monde Nissin, for its part, will donate the required equipment for the UP Mindanao Fermentation and Purification Laboratory and provide other possible resources for the project to produce products or systems for renewable packaging technology, or other viable industrial applications. UP Mindanao’s collaboration with Monde Nissin is aligned with UP Mindanao’s plan to strengthen both its academe-industry linkage and its research and production process in order to convert the products of research into relevant public service. The collaboration, at the same time, contributes to the sustainable development goals for industry innovation, sustainable communities, responsible consumption and production, and for partnerships towards these goals.  
 
 
S.T.O.P. Rabies music video
 
Asst. Prof. May Anne E. Mata (Department of Mathematics, Physics, and Computer Science), a project leader of the Synoptic Study on Transmission and Optimum Control to Prevent Rabies (S.T.O.P. Rabies) research program, produced a music video to widen public awareness on rabies and its prevention. The video was uploaded to YouTube on 13 May for online dissemination. See the video here: http://bit.ly/2XGQwR4
 
MOLECULAR BIOLOGY CAMP
 
     Teachers from local high schools spent some of their vacation time for learning in the “Molecular Biology Camp for Teachers” at the University of the Philippines (UP) Mindanao on 14-18 May 2019. The training was organized by the Philippine Genome Center-Mindanao Satellite Facility (PGC-MSF) Science Education and Training Division to capacitate teachers and to create interest among their students.  The lectures introduced the uses of molecular biology to detect, diagnose, and monitor diseases in health, detect risks and food-borne pathogens in food, diagnose crop or livestock disease in agriculture, and other uses for sustainable development. The hands-on laboratory training included DNA extraction from fish tissue, primer design, polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and other techniques. PGC-MSF project leader Prof. Lyre Anni Murao told the teachers, “Our mandate is to spread omics research (e.g. genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, metagenomics, transcriptomics) throughout Mindanao, starting with the teachers. Our next training batch will be with students. We hope you can influence your students to discover the exciting and interesting field of molecular biology and omics.” Speaking on behalf of his fellow trainees, Mr. Sherwin Fortugaliza of Davao City National High School said, “We’ll give our sincere effort to encourage our students to know more of molecular biology as a significant and promising field. With the challenges that the Department of Education family is facing on trainings in the sciences, we will look for ways to motivate our learners to go into the field of molecular sciences.” The other schools who were represented in the training through their teachers were Sirib National High School, Tacunan NHS, Mintal Comprehensive NHS, Catalunan Pequeño NHS, Crossing Bayabas NHS, Panabo NHS, Daniel R. Aguinaldo NHS, Tagakpan NHS, Doña Carmen Denia NHS, Philippine College of Technology, and Ateneo de Davao University.  
 
WRITESHOP ON OMICS RESEARCH PROPOSALS
  
The Philippine Genome Center-Mindanao Satellite Facility (PGC-MSF) held the “Writeshop on Omics Research Proposals” for personnel of research institutions on 30 May 2019 at the University of the Philippines (UP) Mindanao. The organizations who were represented at the write-shop were Tagum Development Corporation, Southern Philippines Medical Center, Bureau of Plant Industry, Philippine Eagle Foundation, Davao del Norte State College, Compostela Valley State College, Ateneo de Davao University, and UP Mindanao. Dr. Lyre Anni Murao and Dr. Annabelle Novero served as Resource Persons through their respective talks on “Principles and Applications from Molecular Biology to Omics” and “How to Write a Good Grant Proposal." Project Officer Ediflor Yanong and Project Assistant Marian Luayon spoke on “Guidelines on Submission of Proposals to DOST and DA.” University Researcher Wilson Aala gave the “Introduction to PGC Facilities.” Dr. Murao, Dr. Novero, Dr. Aleyla de Cadiz and Dr. Joel Hassan Tolentino served as Facilitators in the Breakout Sessions.  Some of the participants formulated capsule proposals relating to assessments of diseases or contaminants in selected subjects.  
MANDAYA GRAMMAR WRITING WORKSHOP
 
The Department of Social Sciences organized a Mandaya Grammar-writing Workshop for teachers from the Mandaya indigenous people. The workshop aims to help localize the language curriculum by developing appropriate materials for better Mother Tongue-Based Multi-Lingual Education for Kinder to Grade 3 learners, according to the grammar and culture of the indigenous communities. Resource person Dr. Ricardo Nolasco of the UP Department of Linguistics said, “This workshop is historic, for being the first grammar-writing workshop for the Mandaya language.” The participants were also taught the Bloom software application for assembling instructional materials. At the end of the workshop, the participants presented their instructional materials containing samples of Mandaya language spelling and grammar. The workshop was funded through the UP Academic Program Improvement (API) Fund, which is made available in order to strengthen the link and integration of education, research and creative work, and public service. 
 
GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION SYSTEM TRAINING FOR LGUS, SUCS
 
The University of the Philippines (UP) Mindanao Geo-SAFER research program gave a series of training-seminars on Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for academic and government personnel as a contribution to sustainable development in the region. The “Training and Mentoring for Partner Higher Education Institutions” was given on 27-29 May for Compostela Valley State College, Davao del Norte State College, Davao Oriental State College of Science and Technology, Southern Philippines Agri-Business and Marine and Aquatic School of Technology, and University of Southeastern Philippines. The “Basic GIS Training” was given to LGU officers of Davao del Norte Province on 21-23 May and for LGU officers from the provinces of Davao Oriental, Davao Occidental, Davao del Sur, and Compostela Valley on 29-31 May. The training covered map preparation, flood exposure assessment and map interpretation, use of maps for disaster preparation and mitigation, and other techniques. The participants said the training will help to improve their local Climate and Disaster Risk Assessments and Comprehensive Land Use Plans. 
 
CHED RESEARCH ON PUBLIC HEALTH
 
Chancellor Larry N. Digal welcomed Dr. Vicente Y. Belizario of the UP Manila College of Public Health and his team to the UP Mindanao campus on 31 May 2019. Dr. Belizario is the Principal Investigator of the research program, “Development of Innovative Strategies for the Control and Prevention of Neglected Tropical Parasitic Diseases to Contribute to Universal Health Care.” Dr. Aleyla de Cadiz of UP Mindanao Dept. of Biological Science and Environmental Studies and Dr. Rohani Cena of UP Manila are the Research Co-investigators. The team was in the campus for the Veterinary Public Health Component Coordination Meeting that brought together the program partners: veterinarians from local agencies, medical technicians, and a municipal sanitary inspector. The research program is funded by the Commission on Higher Education's Discovery-Applied Research and Extension for Trans/Inter-disciplinary Opportunities (DARE TO); a funding program that encourages research partnership among higher education institutions.
 
KITE FESTIVAL
 
The Dept. of Human Kinetics and the NSTP classes organized a Kite Festival on 18 May in the DC-UP Sports Complex. The event is the first in the campus and it is hoped that this will be an annual event ion the future. The Festival theme was on "ASEAN unity," and featured designs from ASEAN member countries. The Festival observed standard rules and criteria. Prof. Armando Salazar, Prof. Maria Stella Salazar, and Instructor Jerzreel Abarca served as judges, while Instructor Albert Ramos served as overall coordinator.      
 
UP SCIENTIST I
 
Assoc. Prof. Annabelle U. Novero, from the Department of Biological Science and Environmental Studies, received her renewal of appointment as UP Scientist 1 under the UP Scientific Productivity System on 28 May 2019 in UP Diliman. She is the third UP Scientist from UP Mindanao after Prof. Larry Digal and Prof. Emma Ruth Bayogan.  
 
PAINTING SELECTED FOR BEIJING BIENNALE
 
 
Asst. Prof. Teody Boylie Perez, from the Department of Humanities, will exhibit an oil painting in the 8th Beijing International Art Biennale in the People’s Republic of China. The painting entitled “Contrast of Life, 2018,” is done in the medium of oil on canvas, and is 4.5 feet high by 6.75 feet wide. The painting will on display at the National Art Museum of China, Beijing, from 26 August to 23 September 2019.
 
 
 
NOTABLE PARTICIPATION IN NATIONAL/ INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCES
 
Kobayashi VB. 2019. Weighting strategies for the analysis of secondary outcomes in nested case-control metabolomics data. Paper presented at: Metabolomics 2019 Conference, The Hague, The Netherlands, May 2019. 
 
Gamot RMT. 2019. Virus optimization algorithm for p-median problem. Poster presented at:   Mathematical Society of the Philippines 2019 Conference, 27-29 May 2019, General Santos City. Winner: Best Poster.  
 
Bengan JB. 2019. From the mother tongue, into the mother tongue: Translating from Cebuano to English, from English to Cebuano. Lecture given at: Pundok Katitikan 2019 Creative Writing Lecture Series, UP Cebu Creative Writing Program, 10 May 2019.
Resources and Welfare
SEMINARS ON EARTHQUAKES AND ILLEGAL DRUGS 
 
     Earthquake awareness and dangerous drugs were the subjects of seminars organized by the Office of Student Affairs on 6 May 2019 as part of character and leadership development of students, and the well-being of university constituents. The Earthquake Safety Orientation and Level 2 Drill were held in the morning with Mr. Primo Cruz, disaster risk reduction management consultant of Barangay Matina, as resource person. Mr. Cruz reported on the existence of earthquake fault lines in various locations in Davao City. He focused on a fault line in Barangay Mintal, namely the Dakudao Fault which he traced in relation to various local landmarks. The earthquake level 1 and 2 drills were undertaken to rehearse participants to think through emergency response actions during the drill and to review actions afterward. Level 1 drill was the duck-cover-hold practice beginning from the room, extending to movement through the corridor, to building evacuation, and outdoor assembly at the Oblation. Level 2 drill was the basic life safety drill. This included the head-count of evacuees, the search and rescue of missing persons, evaluation of patient condition, application of first aid using bandage, splint, and transporting without a stretcher. The participants were employees, of physical education and NSTP, and dormitory residents. The Lecture on Drugs was in the afternoon. Mr. Noli Nephi Dimaandal, chief of the Preventive Education and Involvement Section of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency-Region XI, served as resource person.  Mr. Dimaandal spoke on the laws governing illegal drugs, the penalties, and their agency. He described the effects of illegal drugs on the body and warned against the possession, use, and selling of illegal drugs. He also brought sealed samples of the illegal substances for the viewing of the audience. The seminar audience also included employees, students, and the university security guards.  
 
 
STUDENT ACTIVITIES
 
DEBATER IN TAIWAN
Frederick P. Omalza (BS Biology 2019) of the UP Mindanao Debate Society was awarded as 4th Best Judge in the Taiwan Debate Open 2019; held in National Chengchi University, Taipei City, Republic of China (Taiwan) on 24-27 May 2019. His participation marks UP Mindanao’s first appearance in an international debate competition. He was selected and invited as an Independent Adjudicator of the tournament, which gathered the best debaters and judges from all over the Asia Pacific Region and Australia. The 2019 TDO Open category champion was Capstone ProAm, a composite team of debaters from China and Australia. 
 
ARCHITECTURE STUDENTS WIN DESIGN CONTEST
 
BS Architecture students swept the top prizes in the Projéto Design Competition―to create a 30-square-meter living space―held on 11 May 2019 in the Philippine Building and Construction Expo (PhilBex) Davao. The "Flexi Filipino" design by senior students (in photo) was the Grand Winner, and the 1st and 2nd runners-up awards were won by first-year student teams. The entries were developed as exercises in the architecture classes which helped them win in a field of 15 entries from schools and architectural firms. 
SOM INVESTMENTS SYMPOSIUM
 
     The School of Management organized the “UP Mindanao School of Management (SOM) Investment Symposium 2019” on 6 May 2019 from 1:00 to 5:00 pm at the Lorenzo Hall, Administration Building.  Prof. Lemuel O. Calatrava and his ABE191i class, in partnership with the Society of Agribusiness Economists (SoABE), were the organizers with their objective being to provide a venue for UP Mindanao constituents to enhance their financial literacy. The event was divided into two segments.  In Part 1: Investing in Financial Instruments, Mr. John Philip Billones (First Metro Securities Business Development Associate) and Mr. Roberto Marco N. Samson (First Metro Securities Business Development Mindanao Head) discussed the Fundamentals of the Stock Market, and Technical Analysis of Stocks, respectively.  In Part 2: Investing in Agricultural Projects, Mr. Edwin O. Banquerigo (Asst. Regional Director of Dept. of Trade and Industry-Region 11) discussed DTI’s RAPID Growth Project.  RAPID means Rural Agro-enterprise Partnership for Inclusive Development.  A total of 54 UP Mindanao students and administrative personnel attended the event.
 
"SAKDAL" DANCE CONCERT
 
The UP Mindanao Dance Ensemble performed “Sakdal,” a full-length dance concert, on 10 May 2019 at the Mari Dance Studio, Davao City. Admission was open to the general public, free of charge. The show was introduced as a collection of contemporary and improvisational dances on current social issues. The Dance Ensemble is a university resident company that is open for membership to students from all courses. It is housed under the UP Mindanao Department Human Kinetics and is currently led by Coach Ira Sisa Aparra (BACA 2017). See the photos here
 
BRONZE MEDAL FROM ARAFURA GAMES
 
     Swimmer Juan Antonio A. Mendoza (BS Agribusiness Economics 2019) has returned to the campus after traveling with the Philippine contingent to compete in the Arafura Games in Darwin, Australia. He reported that the Philippines was in first place among a number of nations represented in the Games. Juan Antonio, himself, won a bronze medal in the 200 meters Individual Medley. He will present it to Chancellor Larry Digal soon. Juan Antonio was away for two weeks, from 23 April-7 May 2019. He described Darwin as a city of the outdoors with a broad coastline and a beach front. Now, he is looking forward to presenting and defending his thesis paper on Filipino production and consumption before his adviser Dr. Pedro Alviola IV. The photo was taken before he left for the Games.
 

"DUYAN," KORO KANTAHANAY CONCERT

Koro Kantahanay chorale, a UP Mindanao resident company, performed in "Duyan: A Concert for a Cause" on 11 May 2019 at the CAP Auditorium, Davao City. Koro alumni Joey Vargas, Yas Ocampo, Jessi Anne Aligato, and other alumni co-organized the concert for the benefit of House of Hope, a transient home for children undergoing cancer treatment in Davao City. The concert featured student members and  alumni who performed their repertoire under student choirmaster Juven Nino Villacastin. The Koro Kantahanay has performed in local and international choral events since it was founded in 2001.         
 
NATIONAL ELECTIONS
 
A mock-election was carried out by the student council on 8 May 2019, which results were posted on campus bulletin board and on social media. The PRO advertised the UP Dept. of Political Science website, "upsahalalan2019.up.edu.ph," that featured images of ballots in local areas with names of local and national candidates. The website also featured issues on political dynasties and the environment.       
 
 
 

Halalan 2019

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Forums

Browse the UP sa Halalan 2019 website and be informed: 

Browse the Comelec website and be informed.

Official statement on the EBL Dorm Lockdown

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Forums

The University of the Philippines Mindanao would like to express deep regrets for the inconveniences to its constituents, most especially the students, caused by the security measures and protocols during the Opening Ceremonies of the Palarong Pambansa last Sunday, 28 April 2019 at the Davao City-UP Sports Complex located at the UP Mindanao Campus.
 
The security measures were pursuant to protocols for national security, as well as, for public safety; hence, beyond the control of the University. Nevertheless, the UP Mindanao administration sympathizes with those affected by the security measures during the Opening Ceremonies of the Palarong Pambansa considering the unfortunate circumstances.
 
As partners for the management and operations of the Davao City-UP Sports Complex, the University and the Davao City government are working together to craft policies, including policies related to security protocols, to prevent similar incidents happening in the future.
 
The University reiterates its commitment to uphold everyone’s rights to liberty and movement.
 

Flood Hazard Maps turned over, 2019

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Forums

Thank you, Maiq.
 
Here is my revision based from your inputs:
 
 
NEWS: UPMin Researchers of Geo-SAFER Mindanao Turn Over Flood Hazard Maps to LGUs. 
 
 
Researchers from the University of the Philippines Mindanao turned over flood hazard maps to officials of southeastern Mindanao provinces on 11 April in Davao City. Printed copies and soft-copies of the maps, showing the probable flood events based on amounts of rain, were turned over by the Geo-Informatics for the Systematic Assessment of Flood Effects and Risks for a Resilient Mindanao, or Geo-SAFER Mindanao, in the presence of representatives from Department of Science and Technology. 
 
UP Mindanao Project Leader Prof. Joseph Acosta in his remarks said, "It has been two years of field work that included wading into riverbeds.  But, in any research endeavor, the most important action is the dissemination of the research output." 
 
Some 24 river system watersheds were mapped by the UP Mindanao Geo-SAFER project over the two-year period: Davao Oriental with seven watersheds; Davao Occidental with four; Compostela Valley with five; Davao del Norte with three; and Davao del Sur with five, including two in Davao City.
 
Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, in her message read by Davao City Planning Officer Ivan Cortez, said, "Being in the Ring of Fire and with the advent of Climate Change, the Philippines must be pro-active in utilizing technological advancement and facilitating information dissemination." 
 
Davao del Norte Governor Anthony del Rosario, in his message said, "Filipinos are known for their resilience, but today we aim to become more resilient in terms of preparedness and disaster risk-reduction."
 
Receiving the maps on behalf of the provinces were their respective Provincial Disaster Risk-Reduction Management Council (PDRMMC) representatives, Mr. Ritchie Jermia of Compostela Valley, Engr. Gina Chua of Davao del Sur, Mr. Francis Jason Bendulo of Davao Oriental, Ms. Noviejane Rojas of Davao del Norte, and Mr. Harry Chester Camoro of Davao Occidental. Mr. Jermia said, "The program of Governor Jayvee Tyron Uy is to strengthen the PDRRMC, and these maps will enhance our existing Early Warning Systems." Mr. Camoro said, "These maps will surely save a thousand lives."
 
As a testimony, Geosafer Mindanao Program Leader Engr. Meriam Makinano-Santillan related the successful evacuation of a village in Surigao from flood earlier in the year following a forecast from the project's computer application.
 
DOST-XI Regional Director Anthony Sales suggested that, "These maps should be presented to the Regional Development Council-XI to be used as their basis for policy-making and to enjoin the various local government units to use these maps."
 
UP Mindanao technical experts also provided a mini-seminar for the officials. Mr. Gus Kali Oguis spoke on on "Flood Map Generation", Engr. Ryan Calvo on the "Field Survey", and Ms. Trisha Mae Lopena on "Data Processing". Mr. Ryan Keath de Leon in his talk on "Flood Modeling" showed how to identify the appropriate map based on the period of rain.   
 
Dean Dominica Dacera of the UP Mindanao College of Science and Mathematics in her message invited the attendees to avail of more science and technology facilities and services from UP Mindanao and to encourage their provincial youth to apply for the UP College Admission Test. 
 
Also present in the forum were Office of Civil Defense-XI Regional Director Manuel Ochotorena, DENR-XI Mines and Geosciences Bureau Engr. Elac Paye, Damaso Vertido of MinLand, Bema Tajones of PAGASA, Jasper Cristobal of Mindanao Development Authority, Araceli Malate of Central 911, Lee Datuin of Compostela Valley State College, and their agencies' staff members.
 
The Geo-SAFER Mindanao program is being implemented by various higher educational institutions in Mindanao, with UP Mindanao assigned to Region XI. It continued the work started by the UP Mindanao Phil-Lidar 1 project which created maps for 13 rivers which were, likewise, turned over to local government units in 2017. The Phil-LiDAR 1 maps are still available at https://dream.upd.edu.ph. 

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