2023 September 15
COLLABORATION AND INCLUSIVITY. Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Chairperson J. Prospero de Vera III lauds the University of the Philippines (UP) as it led the first UP-State Universities and Colleges (SUC) Summit on Friday (Sept. 15, 2023) in Davao City. De Vera said the summit provided collaboration and inclusivity for all SUCs. (Photo courtesy of the University of the Philippines-Media and Public Relations Office)
MANILA – The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) on Friday highlighted the value of collaboration and inclusivity in elevating the quality of higher education in the country.
CHED Chairperson J. Prospero de Vera made the statement as he lauded the initiative of the University of the Philippines (UP) to spearhead the first-ever UP-State Universities and Colleges (SUC) Summit.
“UP is championing the idea of a unified voice from public universities. This voice resonates collaboration, solidarity, and collective ambition, which is essential in addressing the ever-evolving challenges in higher education,” he said in a speech during the event.
De Vera said the summit, themed “Pagtutulay, Pagtutuloy: Strengthening Partnerships in Philippine Public Higher Education,” is critically timely as the commission pushes for excellence and equity in the sector.
He added that it will open opportunities for all public higher education institutions (HEIs) to “share expertise, experiences, and best practices,” which will generally benefit the sector.
De Vera, meanwhile, mentioned the necessity to ensure continuous access to free education, as he recalled witnessing SUCs’ competence through his actual university visits.
“All these travels… showed me what the higher education sector has been doing. It showed me the brilliance of our public higher education system,” he said.
To date, 76 public and private universities in the country applied for global rankings this year.
But besides competence shown in international rankings, De Vera earlier insisted on how free higher education provides “hope” for the youth coming from the marginalized sector.
As of now, around 2 million young Filipinos are enjoying free higher education, many of which belong to the first-generation graduates in their families.
De Vera also shared the delivery of its promise to open more medical programs following the implementation of the Republic Act (RA) 11223 or the Universal Healthcare Law, and RA 11509 or Doctor para sa Bayan.
“Now, Western Mindanao State University, Mindanao State University-General Santos City, University of Southern Mindanao, and the University of Southeastern Philippines have medical programs, with full scholarships,” he said.
Earlier, the CHED gave the go-signal to 19 SUCs to launch medical programs.
Stephanie Sevillano (PNA)