The Office of Student Affairs held the first-ever remote Orientation in the face of the new normal. Amidst the challenges brought by the pandemic, UPV still holds true to its virtue that “nobody should be left behind.” Despite the growing pains, this activity was conducted to ensure that the newest members of the UPV family, along with their parents, are given the necessary information about the university.
In his welcome remarks, UPV Chancellor Dr. Ricardo P. Babaran calls for the UPV community to work together to make this new normal work for us. Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Dr. Gay D. Defiesta, emphasized the need to shift to remote learning for the safety of everyone. Prof. Agustin G. Huyong, Director of the Office of Student Affairs, presented the importance of the orientation to the incoming first year students and their parents.
The Office of Student Affairs collaborated with the different units within the University for presentation, evaluation items, and FAQ Sheets. The different services under the Office of Student Affairs were presented in a video. These included: Guidance and Counseling Services, Student Organizations and Activities, Administrative Office, Scholarships and Financial Assistance, and Residential Services Unit. The Information and Publications Office also showed videos about the university and its colleges and units as well as the structures that can be seen in the UPV campuses.
The Teaching and Learning Resource Center was presented by Prof. Amy Tanoy. She informed the students of the scheme of remote learning as well as the learning resources that will be available to them, despite the physical distance. Prof. John Lorenz Belanio gave a brief on the Responsible Use of Social Media. This is a very timely topic since everyone is now on these platforms. Discussions on these will also be included in the Personal Effectiveness Program of the Guidance Services Specialists for further emphasis. Dr. Rommel Espinosa, head of the Data and Information System Program, followed with the talk on Data Privacy Act. This allowed the students to see the legal bases of the importance of protecting one’s privacy. In the face of the existing health hazard, Dr. Cecillia Villaruz presented the services of the Health Services Unit. The academic information was given by Ms. Charito Gavadan from the Office of the University Registrar and the questions from the students were then answered mostly by Prof. Jose Go, University Registrar. Dr. Barby Badayos-Jover discussed gender sensitivity and mainstreaming, which may allow the students to realize the importance of gender equality. This was then followed by Prof. Josie Rojo who presented a video on Anti-Sexual Harassment. Finally, Atty. Richard Iquiña talked about the Anti-Hazing Law which sheds light on presumptions of the students and parents on organizations within the university.
After the orientation, the students were asked to answer evaluation items, wherein many of them got very high scores. This showed that the students paid attention during the course of the orientation despite setting the rule of disallowing screenshots, downloads, and pictures. This is a testament that despite the challenges, UPV can thrive and not short-change its services to the Iskolar ng Bayan.
(This was originally posted on the UP Visayas website on September 3, 2020)