Chancellor’s Corner

BOR Certification of the Dean’s authority to institute legal actions to protect properties within the jurisdiction of UP Cebu

From the Office of the Secretary of the University and of the Board of Regents: a certification that Atty. Liza Corro, Dean of UP Cebu, has the authority to institute legal action to protect properties within the jurisdiction of UP Cebu, which are registered under the University of the Philippines.

UP Secretary Certifcation

Guro Forum Foundation Conference Address – Oct 28, 2015

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It is with great pleasure and honor for me to give this Conference Address to this 2015 International Conference Workshop for Teachers and Administrators with the theme: “The Twenty-First Century Education: Promoting the Learner Based Paradigm”. We in Cebu had looked forward to this conference, as early as last year.  Had this been held in Cebu, we in UP Cebu would have readily agreed to host and be a co-sponsor for this activity, as we had previously relayed to the members of the Guro Formation Forum, Inc.

This year’s conference theme is very timely and appropriate to make us reflect and review on the role of educators. Teaching is a complex endeavor that involves planning and organizing.  And in doing so, we should be prepared to help learners really explore the topic in a way that will inspire and guide them to additional learning once the class is over.

The English writer and essayist Charles Lamb said, and I quote: “He is no lawyer who cannot take two sides”.  Since I am a lawyer and a teacher at the same time, I will take the three sides. And you might ask what these three sides are?

According to the noted Math educator and author and producer of audio-visual materials Dr. Lola May, there are three things to remember in teaching, and these are: know your stuff, know whom you are stuffing, and then stuff them elegantly.

The power and influence that we can wield as an instructor really ask that we do our part to prepare and teach in a way that reflects our passion for our subject. When students sense that an educator’s zest is authentic, they not only respond, but they usually respond with the same zest that we put in. In effect, we reap what we sow.

Even for administrators and leaders, the same principle applies. It is not about us, but it is all about them, our people and our staff, and how do we connect to them and their needs. The inspirational author on “Leadership”, John C. Maxwell, asks how do we get our message across.  We do this by giving ourselves, and not just our opinions.  We do this by practicing the “Law of Connection” with our audience.

Applying the techniques of Maxwell, be it to our students or our subordinates, we ask what is it that they need and we seek to understand and connect with them.  We do not ask what is it that I have, and seek to be understood and liked.   We focus and try to feel the atmosphere, and not us instead focusing on our techniques, on how good am I in communicating my message or lessons.  This is because we are audience-oriented and not immersed and conscious on ourselves.  We do this because we want to complete our people and our students, and not just for the sake of us being able to complete our speeches and our syllabi and lesson plans.  All these because there is a change we want to achieve, and not just because there is a content that we want to accomplish.

With Learning Focused, all students learn to the greatest possible degree and at the highest level. We have all seen that the issue of “innovations” has grown in importance. Our students are exposed to fast-paced technological revolutions.  But at the end of the day, there is still no substitute for a professional’s eager interest and passion for teaching.  And it is this passion and zeal in us as instructors, which recharge everyone’s mental batteries.

The education landscape is changing – fast. Schools throughout the country are recognizing the challenges that come with those changes. We have learners who are challenged and in difficult contexts, be it through their cultural or linguistic ethnicity, disaster affected, rural migrants, or may be in conflict with the law, or just basically financially challenged.  We acknowledge the efforts of the government to address some, if not most or all of these challenges. We see this like through the recently passed law “Iskolar ng Bayan Act of 2014”, granting automatic admissions or automatic scholarships into state universities and colleges to qualified students from all public high schools.  Even us in UP, we have the Student Tuition System or STS, which provides a socialized tuition system in order to address better these challenges of our students.

With the aim and goal of this conference which focuses on the power of effective teaching, high expectations, support for all students and continuous improvement, rest assured the three things to remember in teaching will come to fulfilment.

Today, the educational system is at the crossroads of its future. Are we using the right tool in the crisis? Have our recovery programmes had the intended effects? How can we assure an inclusive, lasting and sustainable growth? How do we produce long-term value product?

To the organizers of this conference, the Guro Formation Forum, Inc., I commend you on your commitment to improve teaching and all the objectives that your association stands for.

And I wish everyone the most fruitful three day conference with interesting and stimulating discussions and exchange of knowledge so that we can, together, envisage the future of an innovative classroom.

Maraming salamat.

ATTY.  LIZA D. CORRO
Dean
University of the Philippines Cebu

 

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UPC revises infra plans to avoid cutting of trees

THE UPC administration formally disclosed Friday (23 October 2015) that it would not cut down trees to pave the way for new buildings in the campus in Lahug, Cebu City.

Sitting as panel during the consultation forum with media and stakeholders were Dean Liza D. Corro, Campus Arch. Dioscoro Alesna Jr., and Campus Development and Maintenance Officer Engr. Albert B. Bascon.

The UPC campus has a total land area of 12.8 hectares, but informal settlers are occupying almost half of it.

There are 338 trees of 52 different species in the UPC campus.

“Don’t ever think that we do not care for the environment. We are on the same page here,” Dean Corro told about 70 students who attended the forum.

The administration planners have to go back to the drawing board to see to it that the planned infrastructures won’t harm any tree.

“It’s a compromise because we have to reduce certain areas, we have to follow certain standards for buildings,” said Alesna Jr.

Alesna said they didn’t really know if the planned facilities would affect the trees until they visualized the actual building layout.

He said the plan now is still to comply with the Department of Education’s (DepEd) standard classroom size at 7m x 9m for classrooms, but the corridor will be narrower at 6 ft. instead of 8 ft. to spare the trees on the site.

“We cannot give you everything. If you want better buildings, then there are some sacrifices that have to be made. But then, if you don’t want any tree to be cut, then that was the solution. We just have to minimize the corridors,” said Dean Corro.

In 2010, the Board of Regents, the highest governing body of the UP System, approved the proposed land use plan for the UP Cebu campus in Lahug and classified it into three zones, namely: the academic zone, academic support services, and open spaces.

The land use plan was zoned up by the UP System’s Office for Design and Planning Initiative.

As suggested by the land use plan, the suitable areas for new buildings are: 1) back and front of guest house; 2) back of the administration building; 3) side and back of the undergraduate building; and 4) the basketball court.

In the infrastructure pipeline are: 1) UP High School building (P4.5M); 2) AS Extension building (P13M); 3) Undergraduate Extension building (P3M); 4) two-story Business Management Cluster (BMC) building.

The two-story BMC building, said Alesna, will entail earth-balling and transfer of a few trees.

Next year, a seven-story, P175-million Science building will be constructed on the area where the clinic and CDMO offices are.

The forum, which was preceded by a tree-planting activity at the AS field in the morning, was in reaction to earlier reports that students were alarmed at the news that the administration was supposedly planning to cut down trees to pave the way for the construction of new buildings.

“I think that was a bit premature ‘outrage.’ We’ll have to prune trees probably, but pruning is not cutting,” said Corro, who led the administration, faculty, students and staff, including the Dean’s Advisory Council and the CDMO, in the tree-planting activity.

Corro said the activity had long been planned before the issue on the supposed cutting of trees surfaced.

“Because I’ve noticed that there’s really a lack of trees, especially here (AS field), and it’s hot and warm,” she said.

Thirty saplings, including mahogany and narra, from the Department of Agriculture were planted.

This is to show everyone that, I think, we don’t have any disagreement between us (administration), the students and the environmentalists,” said Corro. “I don’t think there was supposed to be that kind of disconnect among us, the environmentalists, and the students.”

The dean said that among the universities in Cebu, in terms of ratio between land area and number of trees, UPC is one of those campuses that has the most number of trees.

In a public forum Wednesday last week, UPC’s Supreme Student Council chairperson Justin Balane suggested that the administration should consult environmentalists or come up with alternatives in building facilities without compromising the environment.

Earlier, UPC was supposed to hold a public forum as a requirement for its Department of Environment and Natural Resources application for the construction of new buildings, which would have entailed the cutting of trees.

However, as the new plan avoided the cutting of trees, UPC did not pursue with the requirement. It also wanted to talk first with students who were initially alarmed by the news.

The DENR permit was only necessary because of the anticipated cutting of trees, but since no trees will be harmed under the new plan, the school can forego with the requirement.

 

(With reports and photos from Leia Pelobello and Gwen Gaviola, Public Information Office)

UP Cebu Annual Report 2014

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Click to download the 2014 Annual Report of UP Cebu.

No Budget Cut

 Thursday, September 24, 2015

THERE is no budget cut in the University of the Philippines.”

This was how UP Cebu dean Atty. Liza D. Corro answered the allegations of around 400 UP students who staged a protest at around 11 a.m yesterday at the UP grounds in Lahug, Cebu City against the eyed budget cut in UP and other state universities and colleges next year.

The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) had proposed P10.9 billion for the UP system in 2016, from the P13.14 billion in 2015.

The P2-billion decrease, according to Corro, was due to the modernization of UP-Philippine General Hospital (PGH) in Manila. The P3.2-billion item for PGH in 2015 is no longer in the proposed 2016 budget.

But she cleared that the amount for personal services (PS) in 2016 for the entire UP system has been increased by P953 million and P260 million for maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE).

The UP system has eight campuses nationwide. They include UP Diliman, UP Manila, UP Cebu, UP Tacloban, and UP Mindanao, among others.

“The budget in UP (Cebu) has been increasing every year,” Corro told Sun.Star Cebu yesterday afternoon in an interview at her office.

No cut

For UP Cebu alone, it has a budget of P173 million this year. Next year, the endorsed budget is at P208 million, but this amount is only for capital outlay (amount used to finance physical structures) and equipment outlay. This means that when the other portions of the budget will be included, like the personal services (PS) and maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE), next year’s budget for UP Cebu is significantly high.

“There’s no real budget cut. It’s not really accurate what they (students) are saying,” Corro stressed.

But for Nagkahiusang Kusog sa Estudyante (NKE), a student organization in UP Cebu, the dean has to better look at the entire situation.

“What she (Corro) did not know is that the protest is not only for UP, but for all SUCs. The point of Dean, although I don’t blame her, is isolated siya to UP services solely,” said NKE chair France Degamo.

Although the UP system is considerably in a “better” position than the other SUCs, Degamo noted that Corro and the students should not just be concerned about UP Cebu. Rather, they should look at the real situation, the student activist advised.

Fifty-nine out of the 114 SUC’s are facing budget cuts.

Under the administration of President Benigno Aquino III, UP has experienced a decrease in its budget four times from 2010 to 2016. These were in 2011, 2012, 2014, and in the proposed 2016 budget.

The biggest was recorded in 2011 when UP was allocated P5.75 billion. This was a P1.16-billion drop from the 2010 budget of P6.92 billion.

“We concede that we (in UP) are lucky. But our responsibility as lucky students should be to fight for the unlucky ones,” the student activist said.

Meeting

Corro said she hasn’t met with the students yet to discuss the matter, although she suggested during the protest yesterday if she can give a short talk to explain the matter, but she was informed that there was a “program” to follow.

Degamo said she will submit an infographic to Corro detailing the budget cut seen to be experienced by students in other SUC’s.

Yesterday, UP Cebu celebrated its fifth year as an autonomous unit of the UP system.

In the past, UP Cebu was under the administrative supervision of UP Visayas, together with three other satellite campuses: UP Miag-ao, UP Iloilo and UP Tacloban.

On Sept. 24, 2010, the UP Board of Regents elevated the status of UP Cebu to that of an autonomous unit.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on September 25, 2015.

Message during Gawad Dekana 2015 awards night on the 5th Anniversary of UP Cebu’s autonomy

I would like to welcome everyone to this 5th year anniversary of the granting of autonomy to UP Cebu, especially to our retirees, loyalty awardees, and the honorees for the Gawad Dekana, and to my dear faculty and students who are here with us right now.

Today is a very memorable day for me.  It was three years  ago when I was invited to the 2nd year anniversary celebration of UP Cebu’s autonomy, wherein I was first asked  if they can nominate me for the position of the Dean.  And now 3 years later, I have no regrets and  I am very grateful to have been given the opportunity to serve UP Cebu.  As I had said in my investiture speech, by having accepted this position, I have come Home.  This is where I can make a difference and where I intend to make a difference.

As to what I had mentioned in my investiture speech, I would like to summarize them on what were my promises then.  It all sum up in relation to  3 things, people, programs and facilities.  I would like to say that I had fulfilled all these promises, to the best of my ability, despite all the constraints we have here in UP Cebu.

 First and foremost for “people”,  we have activities and programs implemented to empower and enhance our human resources.  Together  with the enhancement of our human resources is the discipline that we instill where  needed.

I believe that when the human complement is strengthened, the  rest follows, like in our academic programs.  Improvements and successes in our academic programs manifested through our students’ excellence, be it inside and outside the university.  They are  excelling in competitions and leading in the endeavors where they engage themselves.  As I had promised everyone, we will cultivate and enhance a research culture within our university.  And with all the support that was poured in, both monetary and otherwise,  research culture has flourished during the past three years.  Our faculty’s research and publication profile and attendances in paper presentations in international conferences are its clear indicators.

And lastly, our facilities will all speak for these.  We are all now enjoying better facilities and we get to appreciate better surroundings, unlike before.  Although there might be more improvements we can still implement.

And for all of these I would like to thank everyone who supported me,  both my past and present Associate Deans and heads of different offices, and all the faculty and staff. And of course our UP System officials as headed by President Alfredo Pascual.

To all our Gawad Dekana awardees,  congratulations to all of you.  And to our loyalty awardees and retirees, thank you for the dedicated service you had rendered to UP Cebu.

Maayong gabii sa atong tanan!

BSP’s “Protect Your Money” Campaign 2015

Hello everyone!

Here are saving tips from the Banko Central ng Pilipinas. Please watch these videos and be one in this advocacy to raise awareness and consciousness on the importance of developing the discipline of saving money.

Live Simply, Save Early

Live Within Your Means, Live Life to the Fullest

Be a Wise Saver

Thank you.