State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) are mandated to perform quadrupole functions in instruction, research, extension and production that are expected to generate promising impact for societal and economic development.
With research being one of their keen focus for innovation and technology-generation, seven (7) SUCs in the country converged to be partners in the advocacy to engage with engineering programs toward the development of high-impact research for socio-economic development.
These SUCs will be working on a project known as the BRIDGES Program or ‘Building Research and Innovation Developmental Goals for Engineering State Universities and Colleges’. Each one agreed to jointly undertake the implementation of the project, the VIRTUALTOURS.PH, which is an online Virtual Reality Based Platform for Philippine Tourism Destinations and Cultural Heritage Sites under the BRIDGES program. Their partnership was sealed through the virtual inking of the Memorandum of Agreement last May 14, 2021.
The project’s lead SUC, the Batangas State University, which had been highly acclaimed for their achievements and unwavering commitment to quality and excellence especially in the field of engineering, selected six other SUCs to work with them in the entire process of unfolding the full throttle of the project. Their team was represented by their SUC president, Dr. Tirso A. Ronquillo.
The six (6) other SUCs were the Central Philippines State University (CPSU) represented by Dr. Aladino Moraca as SUC president, the Caminguin Polytechnic State College (CPSC) represented by their SUC president Dr. Macario Oclarit, the Cebu Technological University (CTU) represented by their SUC president Dr. Rosein Ancheta, Jr., the Ifugao State University (ISU) represented by Dr. Eva Marie Codamon-Dugyon as the SUC president, the Northern Negros State College of Science and Technology (NONESCOST) represented by their SUC president Dr. Renante Egcas, and the Technological University of the Philippines (TUP) represented by their SUC president Dr. Jesus Rodrigo Torres.
Particularly, the CPSU Project Management Team (PMT) whose function is to coordinate closely with the lead PMT, is headed by Engr. Rene Dagunan, dean of the College of Engineering, as the Project Leader. He ensures that project goals and objectives are attained, as well as the timely submission of the completed reports to the lead SUC, among other functions.
Working with him are his Project Staff composed of Dr. Chester Cofino who shall man the administration of the software, Engr. June Villaflor who takes charge of the photography, multimedia and content data, Dr. Flora Carpio who shall assist the content manager in the preparation of multimedia content and other data, Sir Merrick Paculanang for the maintenance and monitoring of the network and servers for the project, and Sir Rico Onding to assist the project leader in the implementation of the project’s goals and objectives.
Dr. Moraca stated that this auspicious project guarantees to spur socio-economic development that highlights the unique culture and heritage of the Negrenses. He believed that this can be a start of a great collaboration and partnership with one of the country’s frontiers in the field of engineering. Expressing his great gusto for the project’s anticipated outturn, he likewise believes in what the CPSU PMT can contribute.
“We are truly thankful to Batangas State University for creating the bridge for us to collaborate in this one-of-a-kind project. The beauty of this program is on the expansion of our network towards the internationalization of our agenda anchored on sustainable goals. Hence, I give my full commitment to strongly support in this project as a channel for more future collaborations with your institution,” Dr. Moraca said.
He further stated that with the current standing of the University’s College of Engineering program in the 2019 board exam result having received a distinct award from the Professional Regulations Commission (PRC) as the top 7 among the top 10 best performing schools in the country, this ensures that the University is geared to par with the country’s leading schools in the field of Engineering.
Indeed, this remarkable project is expected to create a distinct mark in the country’s tourism industry and economy that will leave a global imprint of what Filipinos can do in the spirit of collaboration and unity.
by: J.A. Emoy