UP's Pride and Glory

Highlights of October, 2020

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Achievements

 

HIGHLIGHTS

01 - 31 October 2020

MINDANAO COVID-19 SITUATIONER

Davao City, home of UP Mindanao, continued to be under Modified General Community Quarantine (MGCQ) from July to October 2020. Also, City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio issued Executive Order 55 re-imposing a 7 PM to 5 AM curfew, with exceptions, effective 15 October to 31 December 2020 to control the surge of COVID-19 cases  

As of 31 October 2020, Mindanao had 22,585 cumulative cases, up from 13,085 as of 01 October 2020, up from 7,950 on 06 September 2020, and 4,516 on 10 August 2020. 

Mindanao island suffered 585 deaths as of 31 October 2020, up from 319 as of 01 October 2020, 167 as of 06 September 2020, and 96 as of 10 August 2020.   

The nation-wide total on 31 October 2020 was 378,933 cumulative cases, with 7,185 deaths, compared to 1 October 2020 with 311,694 cumulative cases and 5,504 deaths. (source: ncovtracker.doh.gov.ph) 

COVID-19 INITIATIVES

Center for Applied Modeling, Data Analytics, and Bioinformatics for Decision-Support Systems in Health

UP Mindanao received a letter dated 08 October 2020 from DOST’s Undersecretary for Research and Development Rowena Cristina Guevara conveying approval for UP Mindanao’s proposed Niche Center in the Regions (NICER) program. The approval is subject to compliance with instructions, priority ranking, and availability of funds. The NICER program was renamed "Center for Applied Modeling, Data Analytics, and Bioinformatics for Decision-Support Systems in Health,” as advised by the DOST Executive Committee.  

UP Mindanao’s NICER program will involve key regional and local institutions in its four component projects and the Philippine Genome Center Mindanao and UP Mindanao’s existing multi-disciplinary research. The NICER program is a key pillar in UP Mindanao’s Mindanao Health Initiatives that will include the proposed medical education program and a city hospital, in partnership with the Davao City Government. 

At present, the NICER program will focus on the current pandemic, but it will also analyze other health-related data in the future. Mindanao will be the pilot area of the proposed program.

3rd Madayaw International Multidisciplinary Research Conference

UP Mindanao researchers presented ePosters and oral presentations at the 3rd Madayaw International Multidisciplinary Research Conference on the theme, “Shaping the future research emerging from this COVID-19 pandemic,” organized by the San Pedro College Research Publication Innovation Center held on 01-02 October 2020 in Davao City.

The Department of Mathematics, Physics & Computer Science (DMPCS) constituents presented the following ePosters:

  • "Temporal projections of COVID-19 cases, deaths, and recoveries in Davao City, Philippines, using an Epidemic Model," presented by Ms. El Veena Rosero.
  • "Investigating the role of a food ration system in controlling COVID-19 at barangay-level in Davao City using agent-based model simulation approach," presented by Ms. Ivy Grace Morales Panogalinog. [THIRD PLACE]
  • "The irony of zero rabies reports: Are zeroes really zeroes?" presented by Mr. Zython Paul Lachica [SECOND PLACE]
  • "QGIS-generated maps capturing the spatiotemporal distribution of COVID-19 cases among barangays in Davao City, Philippines" presented by Ms. Mia Kristine Quinco [FIRST PLACE]

Among the research co-authors were Mr. Abel Leandro Borja Paras, Ms. Elaine Mae Tibayan, Ms. Alaina Plaza, Ms. Kylah Catherine Nulada, Dr. Aurelio De Los Reyes, and Assoc. Prof. May Anne Mata (DMPCS). 

The Department of Social Sciences (DSS) faculty members presented the following researches as oral presentations:

  • “Banana Export Industry: Socio-Economic and Ecological Transformation,” presented by Asst. Prof. Theresa Mae Gallardo
  • “Stress Inoculation Training (SIT) On State-Trait Anxiety of High-Stress Senior College Students,”  presented by Asst. Prof. Rachelle Bersamin 
  • “Exploring Academic and Occupational Interest Aptitudes as Predictors of Academic Persistence: Basis for Attrition Intervention Program,” presented by Asst. Prof. Rachelle Bersamin  

Lecture Series in Mathematical Biology

Dr. May Anne Mata (DMPCS) delivered the talk “A seven-month-long journey to Covid-19 modeling, simulations, game development, and beyond,” in the Lecture Series in Mathematical Biology: Insights from Equations; Mathematical Techniques for Outbreaks, organized by the Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology on 17 October 2020.

 Sibya Media Production Unit 

BACMA Sibya, the homegrown media production unit of the BA Communication and Media Arts program, produced an infographic version of the “UP Mindanao Health and Safety Guidelines during the Public Health Emergency” as part of the unit's pioneering projects. The infographics were based on UP Mindanao Memoranda Nos. LND-2020-052 dated 14 May 2020 and LND-2020-054 dated 17 May 2020. The team disseminated the materials on social media, UP Mindanao’s official Facebook and Twitter pages, on 05 October 2020.

BACMA Sibya Media Production Unit produced new infographics titled “Frequently Asked Questions on COVID-19” on 26 October 2020, based on the UP Mindanao Executive Committee's pamphlet. The team, likewise, posted the infographics on the UP Mindanao social media pages. BACMA Sibya is headed by Mr. Samuelle Marionne Sanchez, an Instructor under the Department of Humanities. 

KNOWLEDGE CREATION AND PUBLIC SERVICE

Publications

Associate Professor Jhoanna Lynn Cruz (Department of Humanities) announced the release of her book, "Abi Nako, or So I Thought," by UP Press on 25 October 2020. "It revolves around my first ten years of rebuilding my work-in-progress-life in Davao," she said. The book is available in online resellers Lazada and Shopee. 

In Press: 

“Postharvest Quality of ‘Carabao’ Mango as Affected by Spun-bound Bagging Materials,” by Leizel B. Secretaria, Emma Ruth Bayogan (Department of Biological Science & Environmental Studies [DBSES]), CS Lubaton, AG Notarte, and Jenny H. Ekman. 2021. Chiang Mai University Journal of Natural Sciences. Vol 20 No. 1.

The following papers were accepted for publication in international/national peer-reviewed journals and publications:

  • “Seasonal Change, Fishing Revenues, and Nutrient Intakes of Fishers’ Children in Davao Gulf, Philippines” by Chino M. Joquiño, Jon Marx P. Sarmiento (School of Management [SOM]), Leo Manuel B. Estaña (Department of Mathematics, Physics & Computer Science), Cleto L. Nañola, Jr (DBSES), and Pedro A. Alviola IV (SOM) was accepted for publication in the Philippine Journal of Science. 
  • “The Extent of Technological Innovation Adoption among Micro, Small and Medium Food Processing Enterprises and its Effects on Poverty Reduction” by Kenneth Barroga, Agnes Rola, Dinah Pura Depositario, and Larry Digal (SOM) was accepted for publication in the International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business. 
  • “Hullubaton: Pagtatagpi-tagpi ng Dawot ng Mga Mandaya. ‘Mga Pag-aaral sa Epikong-Bayan ng Filipinas: Tradisyon, Lipunan, Inobasyon,’" by Genevieve J. Quintero was accepted for publication in the Philippine Epic Project, National Commission for Culture and the Arts.  
  • “Being Woman: Depiction of Women in Three Blaan Folktales. ‘Tinipong Tinig Ng Kababaihan, Priestess to Presidents,’" by Genevieve J. Quintero was accepted for publication by the UP Press.  

Davao Reads Amado Hernandez

UP Mindanao faculty members were panelists in "Davao reads Amado Hernandez," the second part of the National Artists Series, which featured National Artist for Literature Amado V. Hernandez's works, held online on 02 October 2020.

Associate Professor Jhoanna Lynn B. Cruz of the Department of Humanities (DH) and Senior Lecturer Lualhati Milan Abreu of the Department of Social Sciences (DSS) were panelists, and Assoc. Prof. John Bengan (DH) served as Coordinator and Reader. The Keynote Speaker was Dr. Virgilio S. Almario, National Artist for Literature. The National Commission on Culture and the Arts organized the event as part of the continuing Literary Month celebration.       

Mindanao-wide Webinar on Omics Research. Theme: Moving Past Pandemics

Philippine Genome Center Mindanao organized the Mindanao-wide Webinar on Omics Research with the Theme: Moving Past Pandemics throughout October 2020. The webinar had four sessions. 

“Omics in Agriculture” was held on 09 October 2020 with Dr. Glenn Gregorio and Dr. Lynn Esther Rallos as resource speakers

“Omics in Food” was on 16 October 2020 with Dr. Mary Ann Torio and Mr. Jacus Nacis

“Omics in Health” was on 23 October 2020, had Dr. Gloria Despacio-Reyes and Dr. Aleyla E. De Cadiz (Dept. of Biological Science and Environmental Studies) as resource speakers

“Omics in Diagnostics” was on 28 October 2020 with Dr. Angelo Josue Lubag and Dr. Clarissa Yvonne Domingo

Online forum and consultation on “Bridging the Health Care Gaps In Mindanao”

UP Mindanao hosted the online forum and consultation on “Bridging the Health Care Gaps In Mindanao" on 14 October 2020 for some 96 or more public health personnel, guests, and university constituents who attended through the teleconferencing and social media platforms. Chancellor Larry Digal provided the background and rationale for the forum as part of the plan to establish a UP Mindanao College of Medicine. 

Dr. Ramon Pedro Paterno, former DOH secretary Dr. Paulynn Ubial, DOH-Region XI director Dr. Annabelle Yumang, and Dr. Teodoro Herbosa spoke on the various aspects and gaps in the Philippines health care system. Health workers in the audience had their chance to give inputs in two parallel break-out sessions. 

Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs Nilo Oponda said the forum output would feed into the succeeding forums and workshops on the curricular templates and facility requirements and the identification of resources to establish the College of Medicine.

Lecture Series on Anthropological Methods

The Department of Social Sciences hosted a Lecture Series on Anthropological Methods in October-November 2020 via the Zoom platform.  Prof. Ramon “Bomen” Guillermo gave a talk on “Ang Salita sa Mata ng Makina: Digital na Humanidades at ang Penomenolohiya ng Pagbabasa” on 28 October 2020 where he explained key Filipino concepts conveyed through words and writing in old Filipino literary works. On 29 October 2020, anthropologist Skilty Labastilla of Ateneo de Manila delivered a lecture on “Applied Anthropology Research in COVID times: Strategies and Ethical Considerations.” Professors Andrea Malaya Ragragio and Myfel Joseph Paluga, both of the Dept. of Social Sciences and Leiden University, are scheduled on 04 November 2020.

Indigeneity, Identity, and Empowerment

Asst. Prof. Andrea Malaya Ragragio of the Department of Social Sciences was a panelist in "Panel 7: Indigeneity, Identity, and Empowerment," organized by the University of California Los Angeles, on how Indigenous groups in the Philippines and Taiwan have instituted programs to define their ethnic identity to the larger society. The event, converted to Philippine Standard Time, was on 29 October 2020, Thursday, 10 AM.

Philippine Queer Studies Conference 2020

Researchers presented papers in the Philippine Queer Studies Conference 2020, organized by the UP Center for Women’s and Gender Studies, UP Babaylan, and the Psychological Association of the Philippines LGBT Psychology Special Interest Group, in partnership with the UP Diliman Department of Sociology, held online on 26-28 October 2020:

  • “Leavetaking and Homecoming: When a Catholic Lesbian Writes,” presented by Assoc. Prof. Jhoanna Lynn B. Cruz (DH)
  • “Pagka-lesbiana: Lesbian Writing as a Space of Becoming,” presented by Assoc. Prof. Jhoanna Lynn B. Cruz
  • “Aging in the Narratives of Older/Tiguwang Lesbians in Davao City, Mindanao,” presented by Assoc. Prof. Raymundo R. Pavo (DSS)  
  • “Higit sa Boys Love: Pagsuri at Pagtalakay sa Imahe ng Bakla sa mga Boys Love Series,” presented by Ray Mart M. Lapiña (BS Anthropology)

PAGSUBANG: DUGONG-Antro Sem Starter Lecture Series

The Department of Social Sciences organized the “Pagsubang: DUGONG-Antro Sem Starter Lecture Series” featuring talks by faculty members on the topics: 

  • “Antropolohiya sa Malapitan: Ambag at Kahalagahan ng Antropolohiya,” by Asst. Prof. Kenette Jean Millondaga, 10 October 2020
  • “Biological Anthropology - Lessons from the Field: Biological Anthropology and the Pandemic,” by Prof. Richard Jonathan O. Taduran, 17 October 2020
  • “Linguistic Anthropology: Sulyap sa Kalagayan ng mga Wikang Rehiyunal,“ by Asst. Prof. Janus Ruel Cabazares, 24 October 2020
  • “Archaeology - Survey of Archaeology in Mindanao: Challenges and Opportunities” by Asst. Prof. Andrea Malaya Ragragio, 31 October 2020

Radyo Iskolar

Radyo Iskolar, the homegrown online radio station of the BA Communication and Media Arts program, returned to broadcasting on 28 October 2020 onward on the platform https://mixlr.com/radyo_iskolar. The new lineup of shows is: “Balitang Iskolar” Cebuano-language news, “Gabay Tambayan” edutainment talk show, “Replay 2K” music program, “Iskoming Out” radio magazine, and “Taralets” music show. The program adviser is Ms. Merle Dawn Comidoy, an Instructor of the Department of Humanities.  

3rd DOST-PCAARRD Intellectual Property Master Class

Ms. Lynda Buenaobra, Chief Administrative Officer, and Ms. Dyle Legaspi, Research Associate, both of the UP Mindanao Technology Transfer and Business Development Office, completed the 3rd DOST-PCAARRD Intellectual Property Master Class that was conducted online nationwide from 06 July to 23 October 2020. Ms. Buenaobra completed the Non-Chemical/Mechanical Patenting while Ms. Legaspi completed the Chemical Patenting and earned distinction as “Mock Exam Topnotcher in Chemical Patenting.” The Virtual Commencement Exercises held on 23 October 2020 had DOST Secretary Fortunato de la Peña, IPOPhil Director-General Rowel Barba, DOST Undersecretary Rowena Cristina Guevara, and DOST-PCAARRD Executive Director Reynaldo Ebora as speakers.   

Meryl Williams Fellowship

Asst. Prof. Glory Dee Romo (SOM) was accepted to the Meryl Williams Fellowship, funded by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR).  It is a 15-month program that will start in late February 2021. The Fellowship's key goal is to enhance participant’s leadership skills and increase their impact through a combination of immersive learning, mentoring, networking, and professional development. The University of England will deliver the program on behalf of ACIAR, with Coffey International Development providing administrative support. 

National Research Council of the Phils. 

Asst. Prof. Kriza Faye Calumba (Department of Food Science and Chemistry (DFSC) was inducted as an associate member of the National Research Council of the Philippines during the Annual Scientific Conference and 18th General Membership Assembly of the NRCP Mindanao Regional Cluster on 30 October 2020.

Land Reservations

 In the UP Laak Land Reservation, located in Davao de Oro Province, the season-long Training on Sustainable Vegetable Production continued in Special Barangay Talle, Laak. Session 4 on Plant Nutrition was held on 08 October 2020, and Session 5 on Integrated Pest Management was on 22 October 2020. The trainings are co-organized by the Talle Barangay Council with Talle Farmers Association as beneficiary. Project partner Compostela Valley State College (CVSC) provided the resource persons. Thirty persons (16 males and 14 females), 12 of whom are DSWD beneficiaries,  participated in both sessions.  

In the UP Marilog Land Reservation in upland Davao City, the Obu Manuvu tribespeople took the Livelihood Training on Beads-Making on 09 October 2020. The training objectives are to protect and promote the tribe’s Living Tradition and provide alternative livelihood to the tribespeople. A total of 16 males and 15 females participated, of which 7 were also DSWD beneficiaries. 

The memorandum of understanding between UP Mindanao and Compostela Valley State College was signed by all parties and is ready for transmittal to the UP Board of Regents.  The general objective of the MOU is to explore areas of cooperation between UP Mindanao and Compostela Valley State College in various public service undertakings in, among others, the UP Laak Land Reservation, that will create synergy and mutual benefit for both parties arising from each party’s resources, expertise, and experience in agricultural production and extension. 

 INTERNATIONALIZATION

BA Architecture students’ work was among the entries selected to represent the Philippines in an international architectural design competition, as reported by the United Architects of the Philippines Commission on Education on 18 October 2020. "Galton de Oro: Dynamic Micro Markets of the Future: A Re-design of the CDO Public Market" by BS Architecture graduate John Bebelone and students Bryan Steven Borja and Marvin Mahinay was among the three entries selected to represent the Philippines in the ARCASIA Students Architectural Design Competition 2020. The announcement of the international competition result is on 02 November 2020.

 OPTIMIZE USE OF RESOURCES / PROMOTE ACCESS AND DIVERSITY 

 Consultation on draft Campus Master Development Plan

A consultation on the draft Campus Master Development Plan was held on 06 October 2020 for UP Mindanao constituents via the Zoom teleconference application. The Campus Planning and Development Office presented the 96-page draft plan. Opinions and feedback were gathered during the consultation and through survey sheets after the event. The Plan was again presented in a consultation for the alumni and external stakeholders on 09 October 2020. 

 Consultation on Proposed Arts and Culture Hub

 On 12 October 2020, the Department of Tourism - Region XI (DOT-XI) and UP Mindanao organized another 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).  DOT-XI Regional Director Tanya Rabat-Tan and her team presented the physical, financial, and activity plans to internal and external stakeholders of UP Mindanao. 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.   

WELFARE OF CONSTITUENTS

In collaboration with the Human Resource Development Office, Information Technology Office, and Ugnayan ng Pahinungod, the Office of Student Affairs organized a webinar for employees and students on 29 October 2020 via the Zoom teleconferencing app. The webinar “Keeping Mental Health In-check: Ginhawa (well-being) in the New Normal’’ had UP Diliman professor emeritus Dr. Violeta V. Bautista as resource person.

UP ALUMNI ASSOCIATION DAVAO

The UP Alumni Association Davao Chapter held its Induction of Officers on 10 October 2020 in a resort in Davao City. Alumni Regent Reynaldo Laserna administered the Oath of Office to the officers via the Zoom teleconference app. Mr. Napoleon Concepcion (right-most) and Mr. Sherwin Ramos (center) were inducted as chairperson and president, respectively. Chancellor Digal is an ex-officio director of the UPAA-Davao.  

UP Mindanao in the News

  • 30 September 2020 COVID-19 Test Facility Completed In Davao Regional Medical Center,” Radio Philippines Network, Inchttps://bit.ly/3lq2PJ2
  • 30 October 2020 “UPMin hosts webinars on digital economy, food security,” SunStar Davao, https://bit.ly/3ko6V3r
  • 30 October 2020 “Filipina architect for culture and heritage,” SunStar Davao, https://bit.ly/2IcXqah
  • 30 October 2020 “UP Mindanao webinars on the digital economy, agriculture, and food,” UP System website, https://bit.ly/35d5mkb
  • 28 October 2020 “Future of Anthropology Panel 7: Indigeneity, Identity, and Empowerment,” UCLA Asia Pacific Centerhttps://www.international.ucla.edu/apc/event/14594
  • 21 October 2020 “Work, business, or side hustle?” SunStarDavao, https://bit.ly/3keUlmV
  • 14 October 2020 “UP Mindanao hosts an online forum with health officers,” UP Twitter, https://bit.ly/2IoPx1f
  • 04 October 2020 “No Davao City barangay under 'very high risk' since Sept. 11,” SunStar Davao,https://bit.ly/35gieGp
  • 01 October 2020 “September Covid-19 cases in Davao City below UP projections,” SunStar Davao, https://bit.ly/2GJJcg4
  • 30 September 2020 “COVID-19 Test Facility Completed In Davao Regional Medical Center,” RPN Radio, https://bit.ly/2Il5Goy

Building Mindanao’s public health with UP Mindanao’s NICER Center

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Achievements

COVID19 INSIGHTSresize50The University of the Philippines (UP) Mindanao will soon build a center for a decision-support system for public health focusing on Southern Philippines. A first in Mindanao, the center will gather information on infectious diseases and use advanced scientific approaches to better understand public health risks.

Data analytics, mathematical modeling, genomics research, and quantitative risk analysis will be used to analyze and gather evidence to support proposed policies. The focus will be on more accurate disease prediction, improve the recovery prospects of infected individuals, and evaluate risk in communities through animal and water studies. Local practices and attitudes will also be given equal consideration in making recommendations. The center will adopt the OneHealth model that encourages multiple disciplines working locally, nationally, and globally to attain optimal health for people, animals, and the environment. The maps and data products will be made available to the public and other sectors to help create policies and decisions related to disease prevention and public health. The centers activities will be undertaken in partnership with the public sector and civil society organizations.

This promising UP Mindanao-proposed center is close to reality after being approved by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST). Program leader Dr. May Anne Mata of UP Mindanao reported that DOST Undersecretary Rowena Cristina Guevara conveyed the DOST Executive Committee decision through an approval letter dated 08 October 2020. UP Mindanaos proposal is being considered for funding under the DOSTs Niche Centers in the Regions (NICER) program,” Dr. Mata stated. We have renamed our NICER program as Center for Applied Modeling, Data Analytics, and Bioinformatics for Decision-Support Systems in Health,' or AMDABiDSS-Health,” she stated.

The NICER center is a part of the Mindanao Health Initiatives of UP Mindanao, which includes a proposed College of Medicine and a city hospital to be undertaken in partnership with the Davao City Government.

The initial projects of the Center for Applied Modeling, Data Analytics, and Bioinformatics for Decision-Support Systems in Health are:

1. Predictive Modeling and Viral Phylodynamic Analysis on the Spatial and Temporal Patterns of Disease Outbreaks with considerations for Control and Logistics applied in Mindanao region. Project Leader: May Anne E. Mata, PhD, UP Mindanao

2. Risk Management and Enhanced Survival Analysis Integrated through Longitudinal Infectious Disease Data and Statistical Epidemiological Model using Clinical Risk Factors. Project Leader Dr. Gernelyn T. Logrosa, PhD, Malayan Colleges Mindanao

3. Vulnerability Assessment Tool: A Decision Support System for Pre-Emptive Preparedness on Emerging Infections Among Animal Reservoir in Urban Green Spaces. Project Leader: Von Carlo P. Dela Torre, MSc., UP Mindanao

4. Integrated Wastewater-Based Epidemiology and Data Analytics for Community-Level Pathogen Surveillance and Genetic Tracking. Project Leader: Lyre Anni Espada-Murao, PhD, UP Mindanao/PGC Mindanao.

UP is Asia’s 69th best, 52nd in academic reputation—QS

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Achievements

By Jo. Florendo B. Lontoc, UP Media and Public Relations Office

The University of the Philippines placed 69th among the top 634 higher educational institutions (HEIs) of Asia in the latest rankings released by Quacquarelli Symonds (QS).

The QS Asia University Rankings 2021 [https://www.topuniversities.com/university-rankings/asian-university-rankings/2021], where UP placed three ranks higher than in the previous years edition and emerged among the top 11 percent of Asian HEIs, was released today, November 25, 2020.

1-rankings trendRESIZE30

Rank 69th is the highest UP has placed in the annual rankings since its 2016 edition, within which period UP placed between 75th and 70th. Its position in the top percentile steadily rose from the top 17.6 percent in the 2018 edition, to the top 14.3 percent in the 2019, the top 12.9 percent in the 2020, and the top 10.3 percent in the last.

Similar to its World University Rankings, QS Asia University Rankings zeroed in on published” institutions or those with at least 100 papers published within a five-year period, cited within six years from publication, all in Elsevier-based and Scopus-indexed publications.

2-underlying dataRESIZE30

In the 2021 edition, UP published 4,885 papers for the period 2014-2018. Publications from UP were cited 22,921 times during the period 2014-2019.

QS measured these published institutions in terms of other key indicators: academic reputation, employer reputation, faculty to student ratio, and international research network. The rankings also looked at the number of staff with PhDs, papers per faculty, international faculty and students, and inbound and outbound exchange students.

Academic reputation was arrived at from 102,500 responses to a global survey of academics; employer reputation, from 52,000 responses to a similar survey of employers; and, international research network, from Scopus and Margalef indices of research collaborations.

3-ranks by indicatorRESIZE30

For these indicators, UP had outstanding Asian rankings. It was ranked 52nd in academic reputation; 53rd in employer reputation; and, 62nd in international research network. It ranked 116th in faculty to student ratio, and 301st and lower in the rest.

4-difference vs averagesRESIZE30

UP performed way above the average in the country and in the region. UPs overall score in the rankings¾51.23 out of 100¾was 113.2 percent above the regional average and 254.9 percent above the Philippine average.

5-reputationRESIZE30

In the QS World University Rankings 2021, released in June 2020, UP achieved a ranking of 396th among the top 1,000 universities picked out from 5,500 institutions. Three other Philippine institutions were in the top 1,000: Ateneo de Manila University, which placed in the 601st-650th bracket; and De La Salle University and University of Santo Tomas, both in the 801st-1,000th bracket.

The method [for the Asia University Rankings] retains key indicators of the global ranking. . . , but also considers a set of performance metrics carefully tailored for the region,” according to the QS Asia University Rankings 2021 fact file sent to the University.

According to its website [https://www.qs.com/], QS, with the main office in London, is a provider of services, analytics, and insight to the global higher education sector.” Its World University Rankings portfolio, inaugurated in 2004, is a popular source of comparative data on university performance.

Highlights of September 2020

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Achievements

MINDANAO COVID-19 SITUATIONER

Davao City, home of UP Mindanao, continued to be under Modified General Community Quarantine (MGCQ) from July to September 2020. 

As of 1 October 2020, Mindanao island had 13,085 cumulative cases, up from 7,950 on 6 September 2020, and 4,516 on 10 August 2020. 

Mindanao island had 319 deaths as of 1 October 2020, compared to 167 on 6 September, and 96 on 10 August 2020.   

The nation-wide total on 1 October 2020 was 311,694 cumulative cases, with 5,504 deaths, compared to 6 September 2020, with 234,570 cumulative cases and 3,790 deaths. (source: ncovtracker.doh.gov.ph) 

TEACHING AND LEARNING

Enrollment

The University Registrar reported a total of 341 first-year students enrolled in September 2020. This total originated from 222 confirmations by UPCAT qualifiers and 141 appeals for admission.

Among continuing students, there were 617 undergraduates and 119 graduate students enrolled, for a total of 958 undergraduate and 119 graduate students enrolled for the First Semester of Academic Year 2020-2021. 

University Registrar Prof. John Bengan led the online Orientation on Academic Processes for First-Year Students on 8 September 2020, and classes started on 10 September 2020. The Registrar has processed the billing of enrollment for reimbursement by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) under the Free Tuition Act. The Office of Student Affairs (OSA) opened the Student Learning Assistance System (SLAS) for applications last 28 August 2020.

Iskolar ng Bayan

UP Mindanao admitted nine first-year students under the Iskolar ng Bayan program. One of each entered the BS Computer Science, BS  Food Technology,  BS Agribusiness Economics, BS Biology, and BS Anthropology programs. Two students each entered the BA Communication and Media Arts and BA English programs. 

Course pack deliveries

VC Oponda handing out USB drives Coursepacks for delivery 

Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs Nilo Oponda and assistant professors Vlademir Shuck and Ryan Songcayauon went to Davao de Oro Province on 29 September 2020 to deliver course packs in printed copies and USB drives to local UP Mindanao students, in coordination with the LGUs as distribution hubs. VC Oponda also met with the provincial government and Tagum City officials and local alumni to strengthen linkage and request the use of LGU internet facilities for UP Mindanao students. In addition, VC Oponda established liaison arrangements for provincial, municipal, and barangay health workers for the upcoming consultation forums on the proposed UP Mindanao College of Medicine.  

The School of Management (SOM) sent out seven course packs to areas within Davao Region, and another seven to areas outside the region, specifically, Misamis Occidental, Misamis Oriental, Agusan del Norte, North Cotabato, Bulacan, Bohol, and Quezon City. 

The College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHSS) prepared 39 course packs in USB and 27 in printed copies for a corresponding number of students. For the College of Science and Mathematics (CSM), eight students requested course packs in printed form and six in USB drives. Six non-CSM students also availed of the course packs offered by the CSM.

Master in Management Bridge Program Day 2

The School of Management (SOM) held the second and final day of the Master in Management (MM) Bridge Program via Zoom on 5 September 2020. Out of the 39 participants, 35 were in attendance. 

Adoption of UPLB’s MS Agricultural Economics

School of Management (SOM) faculty members held a series of meetings in September 2020 to prepare for the process of adopting the UP Los Baños (UPLB) MS Agricultural Economics (MSAE) program. On 7 September 2020, UPLB Graduate School Dean Jose Camacho and the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics (DAAE) of the UPLB College of Economics and Management (CEM) had an online meeting with Chancellor Digal and the SOM faculty. In the meeting, Dean Camacho clarified the process using a similar case as an example. In conclusion, the DAAE faculty expressed their willingness for the adoption of their program by the SOM.

PhD by Research

The SOM welcomed two additional students to the new PhD by Research program following the favorable evaluation of their qualifications and capsule proposals by the Evaluation Committee on 9 September 2020. 

ACIAR Philippine Agribusiness Master Class 

SOM faculty members and researchers completed the Philippine Agribusiness Master Class (AMC) sponsored by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR). Assistant professors Imee Marie Acopiado, Thaddeus Acuña, Miko Mariz Castro, Glory Dee Romo, and university researcher Melissa Loquias completed the online Master Class on 25 September 2020 via video conferencing. The AMC co-sponsors were the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) Australia, The University of Queensland, Foodlink Advocacy Co-operative, and the Department of Science and Technology (DOST). 

Mental Health Helpline

The Office of Student Affairs (OSA) re-launched its UP Mindanao Mental Health Helpline on 25 September 2020 for the First Semester of AY 2020-2021. Their tagline states, “Let's talk. You matter. We care.”

The Helpline is a free mental health and psychosocial support service for students and university employees. For the project, the OSA mobilized the services of Asst. Prof. Rachelle Bersamin (Department of Social Sciences), a registered guidance counselor and registered psychologist, and University Guidance Counselor Remigio Domingo, along with public and private organizations. In September 2020, some 18 students, one employee, and one non-UP Mindanao constituent availed of the services. 

Constituents can access the Helpline through the following links: 

Students - http://tiny.cc/UPMinMentalHealthHelpline

Employees - http://tiny.cc/MentalHealthHelpline

COVID-19 INITIATIVES AND PARTNERSHIPS

Memorandum of Agreement Signing with Police Regional Office–Region XI 

UP Mindanao entered into another memorandum of agreement (MOA) to establish a COVID-19 testing facility, this time with the Police Regional Office–Region XI (PRO-XI) and the Department of Science and Technology–Region XI (DOST-XI), on 16 September 2020 at Camp Sgt. Quintin M. Merecido, Davao City.   

Chancellor Larry Digal, PRO-XI Regional Director Police Brigadier-General Filmore Escobal, DOST-XI Regional Director Dr. Anthony Sales signed on behalf of their institutions. Associate Professor Lyre Anni Murao, director of the Philippine Genome Center (PGC) Mindanao, served as a witness.      

The PRO-XI facility located in the Camp Merecido Hospital is the third COVID-19 facility that UP Mindanao is helping establish, following the recently completed facility in the Davao Regional Medical Center in Tagum City and the facility under construction in the Provincial Hospital of Davao de Oro Province.     

UP Mindanao, through the experts in PGC Mindanao, will provide the facility personnel with training in biosafety and molecular diagnostics and prepare them for proficiency testing by the Department of Health−Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (DOH-RITM). 

DOST-XI will extend the financial assistance for the training and the operation of the facility, particularly in research and development, since the agreement also states that the laboratory can be used as an extension laboratory by PGC Mindanao for R&D, similar to the facilities in Tagum and Davao de Oro.

Continuing Training in SARS-CoV-2Diagnostics for COVID-19Frontliners

In September, the Philippine Genome Center (PGC) Mindanao, a DOH-recognized training facility for COVID-19, trained additional personnel of the Lanao del Norte Medical Center and the Butuan Medical Center in preparation for expanded COVID-19 testing in their respective regions. Personnel of DRMC-Tagum City likewise availed of refresher training. 

Among the new clients for training were the Northern Mindanao Medical Center, the  Northern Mindanao Tuberculosis Reference Center, the Zamboanga del Sur Medical Center, and the Davao de Oro Provincial Hospital-Montevista.  

The PGC Mindanao has provided training services to ten medical institutions since April 2020. 

The Cotabato Regional Medical Center, whose personnel trained in PGC Mindanao, was issued a license to operate. It is the first COVID-19 testing laboratory within the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) and the third PGC Mindanao-trained hospital to acquire the license.

Update on Proposed City Hospital on Campus 

Davao City Councilor Joselle Villafuerte organized an online meeting between UP and Davao City officials on 11 September 2020 to discuss the proposed city hospital on campus. City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio led the Davao City delegation, with Councilor Villafuerte,  City Councilor Javi Campos, City Councilor Myrna Dalodo-Ortiz, City Planning Officer Ivan Cortez, and Barangay Mintal Chairman Rey Bargamento. Chancellor Larry Digal and PGC Mindanao Director Prof. Lyre Murao led the UP group, later joined by Executive Vice President Teodoro Herbosa, UP’s consultant to the project, and UP Manila Chancellor Carmencita Padilla, the lead resource person for the planned UP Mindanao College of Medicine. Councilor Villafuerte presented the hospital project, and the UP team added context by presenting its medical education and research plans, called the Mindanao Health Initiative. Both parties agreed to cooperate for the proposed hospital project. 

HEALTH MEASURES

Disinfection in Campus

The administration undertook the disinfection of university rooms and offices on 18-19 September 2020. All personnel adopted work-from-home arrangements for one workday. 

RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

SMAARRDEC Regional Symposium on Research and Development Highlights

The Southern Mindanao Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development Consortium (SMAARRDEC) held its Regional Symposium on Research and Development Highlights 2020 on 29 September 2020. 

DOST-Region XI Director Anthony Sales, in his update, reported three UP Mindanao ongoing projects, namely, the Niche Center in the Regions proposal for an infectious diseases research and development center, the on-going trainings in SARS-CoV-2 by PGC Mindanao for COVID-19 frontliners, and the development of a manual of operations for COVID-19 testing.  

UP Mindanao researchers presented three papers, all of which were given recognition by the panel composed of Dr. Edna Anit of DOST-Crops Research Division, Dr. Kenneth Barroga of DOST-Region XI, and Dr. Purisima Bayacag of the University of Southeastern Philippines.  

33rd Anniversary slide of SMAARRDEC Title slide of ASY Fuentes 
Title slide of MG Bacus Title slide of BT Sabanal

First Place in the Development Paper Category went to the paper “Giving Farmers Uwen Fananafedew: Improving Agricultural  Extension in Conflict-vulnerable Areas through the LIFE Model,” presented by Senior Lecturer Anne Shangrila Y. Fuentes (Dept. of Social Sciences). 

The paper is from the PULL (PCAARRD-UP Mindanao-Landcare-LIFE) program in its third and final year. The co-authors are E.V. Bayogan (Dept. of Biological Science and Environmental Studies [DBSES]), M.O. Orbeta, H.P. Lozada, K.S. Sigue, J.D. Ignacio, L.N. Digal (School of Management), R.U. Guillermo, M.L. Handa, N.D. Jalandoni, J.P. Esparagoza Jr., E.R. Nasam, T.D. Ballener, N.C. Cordero, M. P. Titan, M.T. Sangki, M.A. Gatela (Office of Extension and Community Service), and N.B. Oponda (Dept. of Mathematics, Physics & Computer Science [DMPCS]). 

The panelists remarked on the project’s comprehensiveness and inquired on the program’s effect on the local conflicts. The panel suggested that the project applies for support from the DOST-Grassroots Innovation for Inclusive Development (GRIND).  

First Place in the Policy Brief Category went to Mr. Michael Bacus (BS Biology) for  “Healthy Nature for Healthy People.” The brief proposes a nationwide One Health surveillance program for emerging infectious diseases in wild animals, livestock, agricultural interfaces, and environmental systems such as rivers and residential areas to serve as an early warning system to detect disease outbreaks. 

The policy brief emanated from the research project “Ecology of Emerging Zoonotic Pathogens from Bats in Malagos Davao City,” funded by the Regional Health Research & Development Council-XI. The research co-authors are Michael Bacus, Stephen Dayap, Nikki Tampon, Marielle Udarbe, Roberto Puentespina Jr., Sharon Villanueva, and DBSES faculty members Asst. Prof. Marion John Michael Achondo, Assoc. Prof. Aleyla de Cadiz, and Assoc. Prof. Lyre Anni Murao, also the project leader. 

UP Mindanao is the implementing agency with UP Manila and Animal Solutions Veterinary Hospital as cooperating agencies.

The panelists said the policy brief would be elevated to the Research Development and Innovation Committee of the Regional Development Council.  

Third Place in the Undergraduate Thesis Category went to Mr. Brian Sabanal (BS Biology) for “Spiders (Arthropoda; Araneae) in the University of the Philippines Mindanao Campus,” with Asst. Prof. Mae Responte as adviser. The paper disclosed the ecosystem services provided by spiders, their role in providing ecological balance, cultural and economic contributions, and called up the law against collecting spiders. 

The panelists commented that the paper is a contribution to the body of knowledge on biodiversity and is commendable for invoking the biodiversity conservation law.

INTERNATIONALIZATION

The Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) also reported on its partnership with UP Mindanao and RMIT University in a blog post on 22 September 2020. The report featured Dr. Mary Johnson of RMIT University, who is working on an ACIAR-supported project in three conflict-vulnerable sites across Mindanao: in Zamboanga Sibugay, Maguindanao, and South Cotabato. The report mentioned the local partners, the University of the Philippines (UP) Mindanao, UP Los Baños, and Landcare Foundation of the Philippines, Inc.

“We're working to improve agricultural extension in conflict areas of Mindanao in the Philippines through a new approach using the iconic Australian Landcare model. In some cases, this is increasing farmer incomes by up to 80% amid conflict and COVID19,” the report stated. 

Intellectual Property Management Program for Academic Institutions Commercializing Technologies (IMPACT)

The DOST-PCIEERD shortlisted UP Mindanao for ten available slots for funding under its Intellectual Property Management Program for Academic Institutions Commercializing Technologies (IMPACT) for 2020-2021.

Following training for this purpose, the Technology Transfer and Business Development Office (TTBDO) Administrative Officer Lynda Buenaobra presented the UP Mindanao IMPACT project proposal to the DOST Governing Council on 23 September 2020. PCIEERD Research Information and Technology Transfer Division chief Russel Pili said the UP Mindanao proposal has a favorable chance for approval. 

Land Reservations

 The UP Mindanao Land Reservation Management Office (LRMO) held sessions for the season-long Training on Sustainable Vegetable Production on 10 and 24 September 2020 in the UP Laak Land Reservation located in Davao de Oro Province (formerly Compostela Valley). The Barangay Talle Council and the Talle Farmers Association co-organized the sessions with an expert from Compostela Valley State College, a new partner.

Some 16 men and 12 women, and 16 men and 14 women, attended the sessions, among which 12 persons are also DSWD beneficiaries. The training is a component of the UP Mindanao public service program for the capability-building of local farmers. The objectives are: to transmit suitable technologies for adoption by the local communities; establish a demo farm for farmers to practice, test, and evaluate such technologies in comparison with their traditional practices; improve knowledge of vegetable cultivation using integrated pest management and similar technologies; empower farmers to be decision-makers, and improve the environmental sustainability of their farming operations.

DONATIONS

Public schools in the UP Laak and UP Marilog land reservations located in Davao de Oro and Davao City, respectively, benefited from a Pahinungod-Oplan Tulong-Dunong Program for School Children in UP Land Reservation Areas, named “Bond Paper Mo Para Sa Module Ko.”

The Department of Education’s Brigada Eskwela in 2020 focuses on the continuation of basic education despite the pandemic. Still, most students in the UP land reservation areas have neither gadgets nor internet connection. The students will learn through printed modules that their schools will provide. The “Bond Paper Mo Para Sa Module Ko” project will contribute to the Department of Education’s Brigada Eskwela by donating five reams of A4 bond paper to selected schools. 

With donations from 13 UP Mindanao constituents, seven schools have benefited from the project to date. The Sinobong National High School in Veruela, Agusan del Sur (within the Laak Land Reservation), Marahan National High School, Datu Lompipi Elementary School, and Datu Ladayon Elementary School (all in the vicinity of the Marilog land reservation) received donations in September. Four more schools will receive donations in the coming months. 

APPOINTMENTS

Dean of the School of Management

The Board of Regents, during its 1354th meeting last 24 September 2020, formally approved the appointment of Asst. Prof. Aurelia Luzviminda V. Gomez as the new dean of the School of Management, effective 24 September 2020 to 23 September 2023.

Prof. Gomez was the former Vice Chancellor for Administration, and she succeeded Assoc. Prof. Pedro Alviola as dean of SOM.

ALUMNI 

UPAA Australia-New South Wales celebrated their 40th anniversary with a series of messages from their scholars, which featured UP Mindanao graduate Mea Joy Avergonzado-Recto (BS Computer Science, 2012) was a UPAAA-NSW scholar currently employed in Finastra.

~ Cheers to 40 Years: A Message From Our Third Scholar ~

“My parents were struggling to send three kids to college. Sometimes my mother had to write promissory notes for the monthly tuition fee. I am eternally grateful to the association because I was able to focus on my studies without having to worry about the financial aspect. Because of the quality education I received, I now work where I'm happy with what I'm doing, which is programming."

 

DMPCS Research ePosters win awards, 2020

Written by Rene Estremera. Posted in Achievements

Researches from the Department of Mathematics, Physics, and Computer Science were presented as ePosters and earned recognition at the 3rd Madayaw International Multidisciplinary Research Conference on the theme, “Shaping the future research emerging from this COVID-19 pandemic,” organized by San Pedro College Research Publication Innovation Center and held on 1-2 October 2020 in Davao City. 

The titles of the ePosters presented were, as follows: 

ePoster #1: "Temporal projections of COVID-19 cases, deaths, and recoveries in Davao City, Philippines using an Epidemic Model" presented by Ms. El Veena Rosero.

ePoster #2: "Investigating the role of food ration system in controlling COVID-19 at barangay-level in Davao City using agent-based model simulation approach" presented by Ms. Ivy Grace Morales Panogalinog. [THIRD PLACE]

ePoster #3: "The irony of zero rabies reports: Are zeroes really zeroes?" presented by Mr. Zython Paul Lachica [SECOND PLACE]

ePoster #4: "QGIS-generated maps capturing the spatiotemporal distribution of COVID-19 cases among barangays in Davao City, Philippines" presented by Ms. Mia Kristine Quinco [FIRST PLACE]

Among the research co-authors were Mr. Abel Leandro Borja Paras, Ms. Elaine Mae Tibayan, Ms. Alaina Plaza, Ms. Kylah Catherine Nulada, Dr. Aurelio De Los Reyes, and Assoc. Prof. May Anne Mata.

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