Honors from the UP president were conferred on outstanding public service programs of the University at the first Gawad Pangulo for Excellence in Public Service awarding ceremony on January 30, 2017 at the UP Executive House in UP Diliman, Quezon City.
Six programs from six constituent campuses each received the Gawad and P100,000. In addition, nine programs were recognized as finalists.
The award, administered by the Office of the Vice President for Public Affairs and its Padayon Public Service Office, aims to recognize UP’s achievement in terms of the mandate to “lead as public service university by providing various forms of community, public, and volunteer service, as well as scholarly and technical assistance to the government, the private sector, and civil society while maintaining its standard of excellence.”
The winners were: the College of Agriculture of UP Los Baños for “The Corn-based Farmer-Scientist Research, Extension, and Development Training Program”; the Center for West Visayan Studies of the UP Visayas College of Arts and Sciences for the “RISE (Bangon) Gigantes Project: Rehabilitation for Island Sustainability and Empowerment”; the Land Reservation Management Office of UP Mindanao for “Economic Upliftment of the Indigenous Peoples’ Community through Agricultural Projects”; the National Institutes of Health of UP Manila for the “Real-time Community Health Information Tracking System (rCHITS)”; the Office of Legal Aid of the UP Diliman College of Law for the “Clinical Legal Education Program”; and, UP Cebu for the “Business Incubator for IT”.
The finalists were: the Center for Integrative and Development Studies of the UP System for the “UP Program for Environmental Governance”; the Department of Geography of the UP Diliman College of Social Sciences and Philosophy for “Geography Field School”; the Institute of Human Nutrition and Food of the UP Los Baños College of Human Ecology for the “Barangay Integrated Development Approach for Nutrition Improvement (BIDANI) Network Program”; the National Institute for Science and Mathematics Education Development of UP Diliman for the “KaSaMa Teachers Online Community”; the Sentro ng Wikang Filipino of UP Diliman for “Programang Aklatang Bayan”; the Ugnayan ng Pahinungod of UP Manila for the “Emergency Room Volunteers Program”, the “Oral Health Project”, and the “Tutorial Program for Street Children”; and, UP Manila for the “Community Health Program”.
The criteria for the awards included: impact, approach or method, service orientation, and enhancement of teaching or research. Nominations required: documentation of the initiative; a list of academic and official citations of the project; certification from project beneficiaries; and, certification of proper liquidation of funds.
The selection committee for this year’s awards was composed of: Sociology Professor Emeritus Manuel Flores Bonifacio; College of Social Work and Community Development Dean Jocelyn Caragay; UP Baguio Chancellor Raymundo Rovillos; and, professor of History, Jaime Veneracion.
Public service publications from the UP System were also presented by: Ferdinand Llanes, founding director of the UP Padayon Public Service Office and its current director, Nelson Cainghog; and, Deputy Director Frances Fatima Cabana of the System Information Office. The publications were: Disaster Risk Reduction Management Handbook for Academic Institutions: A UP Experience; Master Plan of UP Sta. Elena Campus in Tacloban City, 2015; First Colleges and Universities Public Service Conference Proceedings (16-17 November 2015, UP Cebu and 26-27 November 2015, UP Los Baños); Third AsiaEngage Regional Conference Proceedings (21-23 November 2016, SMX Convention Center); and, the UP Visual Identity Guidebook.
Dr. Edna Co, then vice president for Public Affairs, said that service was now on equal footing with teaching and research as a trademark of excellence in the national university; and that UP was at the forefront of defining metrics for it, in partnership with the ASEAN University Network.
The outgoing UP president, Alfredo Pascual, thanked UP units for initiating public service programs. He said universities in developing countries cannot neglect big portions of society, including the government, that need support from university experts.
Text and photo by UP Media and Public Relations Office (MPRO)