UP President Alfredo E. Pascual was conferred an Honorary Doctorate of Philosophy in Social Science by the Shu Te University (STU), Taiwan in a formal ceremony held at the STU’s administration building on November 21, 2016. The conferment was officiated by the STU president, Dr. Yuan Hsiang Chu, who was assisted by the STU dean of the College of Applied Social Sciences, Dr. Yen Ching Lin.
In the Honorary Doctorate Certificate read by Dean Lin during the conferment ceremony, highlighted were President Pascual’s visionary leadership and firm commitment to academic excellence, his efficient university governance as well as his vision, courage, motivation, and inspiration in embarking on challenging programs and projects, one of which is taking the regional role and responsibility to bring the UP team and Southern Taiwan Universities to work together.
In his message of acceptance, Pascual said that one of his immediate priorities when he started as UP President was to lay the foundation for the University of the Philippines to regain its leadership as a regional and global university. He also thanked STU and members of the Southern Taiwan Universities Alliance for their “friendship, guidance and support”, which inspired UP in pursuing its internationalization and operational excellence. “Our partnership inspired us to face the challenges of internationalization confidently and with new and better programs to serve our respective publics,” said Pascual.
These programs include faculty and student exchange, collaboration between STU technical experts and UP students to resolve some city and community issues; and the development of skilled human resource capital across the region. “This 2017, UP’s best young faculty members will be able to explore PhD and MA/MS degree opportunities in STU and other partners through the UP Faculty Professional Advancement in Southern Taiwan program,” Pascual said.
He mentioned the following programs: COOPERATE which allows UP graduate students to conduct research and creative work under the co-mentorship of STU faculty; the proposal to have joint research projects on green technology, open education, and gender studies between UP Open University and STU; and UP Cebu’s hosting of STU’s Graduate School of Arts and Design.
“I humbly accept this honorary degree as a representation of UP’s steadfast camaraderie with STU and the Universities of Southern Taiwan. Together, we have created a model of successful academic partnership to strengthen regional higher education, develop human resources, and improve bilateral friendships that others in the ASEAN region follow in pursuit of peace and prosperity for all our peoples. This honorary degree is a recognition of the collective efforts we have all put in, and of the mutual trust that our institutions have jointly built over time.” Pascual said.
This is the 3rd honorary doctorate degree conferred on Pascual, the first two being a Doctor of Science by the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila, and a Doctor of Pedagogy by Angeles University Foundation.
The conferment ceremony was attended by university officials both from UP and STU. It was held back to back with other activities, which included among others, the academic forum participated in by the Taiwan Ministry of Education and officials of the member-universities of the Southern Taiwan Universities Alliance, and the inauguration of the UP Guesthouse in Kindness Hotel, Kaoshiung, Taiwan.
The UP Guesthouse stemmed from the hospitality and fellowship of the Kindness Hotel President Picasso Chen in support of UP’s plan to produce more PhDs among its faculty by providing comfortable facilities to UP researchers and scholars as temporary abode for free, while they arrange their long term stay in the university of their choice for their doctoral program. Likewise, the establishment of the UP Guesthouse supports the academic exchange and networking among the Alliance of Southern Taiwan Universities and the Constituent Units of the UP System.
With reports from Melinda dP Bandalaria and Jo Florendo Lontoc.