Active relations between the University of the Philippines (UP) and Korea were highlighted during the first lecture and meeting with top UP officials of Korean Ambassador to the Philippines Han Dong-Man. Both events took place in UP Diliman on March 18, 2019.
UP through its Korea Research Center (UP-KRC) invited Han for the first UP-KRC public lecture for 2019 and a “courtesy meeting” with UP officials to celebrate the 70th anniversary of Philippine-Korean bilateral relations, which were formally forged on March 3, 1949 when the Philippines became the fifth country to recognize the Republic of Korea.
As the ambassador gave a lecture on Korean reunification and enhancing the growing economic, cultural, and people-to-people relations with the Philippines, UP officials who welcomed him enumerated the relations the University already has with Korea.
Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs for Internationalization and Director of the UP System Office of International Linkages Gil Jacinto mentioned: the three-year operations of the UP-KRC; UP’s membership in the Korean Studies Association of Southeast Asia (KoSASA); its 2016 hosting of the KoSASA biennial conference; UP’s pioneering of Korean undergraduate classes; and, its academic exchange with 36 Korean universities.
Jacinto reported that South Korea is the second top destination for student exchange for UP, consisting of 123 undergraduate students in 2017-2018 and 14 faculty members currently taking up graduate studies there.
Dean Ma. Fe Villamejor-Mendoza of the UP National College for Public Administration and Governance (NCPAG), the host institution of the lecture, spoke of the College’s co-membership with Korean counterparts in the Eastern Regional Organization for Public Administration (EROPA), and of partnerships with Korean universities and associations for public administration and policy studies.
Concluding his lecture, “Vision for Peace in the Korean Peninsula and the Philippines-Korea Relations”, at the International Center for Public Administration of NCPAG, Han expressed a vision for “co-prosperity between Korea and the Philippines” and asked for “continuous support for our strong ties based upon optimism.”
The ambassador then proceeded to Quezon Hall for a courtesy meeting and working lunch with UP officials led by President Danilo Concepcion and Executive Vice President Teodoro Herbosa.
On a brief overview presentation on UP given by Vice President for Public Affairs Elena Pernia, Han took special note of UP’s social responsibility, its Open University, and rigorous admissions policy.