BSU prexy vows global standards, better governance (Part 2)

Dr. Oscar B. Cabañelez, president, Bukidnon State University| Bukidnon News.Net photo by Walter I. Balane

Dr. Oscar B. Cabañelez, president, Bukidnon State University| Bukidnon News.Net photo by Walter I. Balane

(Second of two parts: An era of changes)

MALAYBALAY CITY (BukidnonNews.Net/09 May) Bukidnon State University president Dr. Oscar B. Cabañelez vowed to pursue global competitiveness and better governance in his four-year term as the university’s second president facing both changes and challenges.

In a series of interviews by BukidnonNews.Net in April 2015 in preparation for BSU’s 1st Grand Alumni Homecoming on April 30 to May 2, he said one of the first changes he faced when he became president is the gradual phasing out of the university’s external study centers. He said no less than Commission on Higher Education chair Patricia Licuanan ordered the phase out.

For example, the external study centers in Montevista, Monkayo, Maragusan, Compostela Valley, and New Bataan all in Compostela Valley province is now under the newly created Compostela Valley State College (CVSC).

The external study center in Sto. Tomas, Davao del Norte will now be a campus under the University of Southeastern Philippines (USEP). BSU is ordered to turn over the operation of the study center to the nearest state college or university.

He said there have been on-going meetings with CHED in Northern Mindanao and Caraga regions. In route to the transition, BSU is turning over the management of the external study center in Trento, Agusan Del Sur to the local government unit there. He said one of the plans is for the study center to be under the Agusan del Sur State College of Arts and Technology (ACSAT). He said it will be a gradual turnover – meaning students who enrolled in the center at the time it was still under BSU will finish the course under BSU.

As of May 11, the Office of the External Study Center Coordinator said BSU has six extension campuses in Bukidnon, namely, Talakag, Kalilangan, Malitbog, Libona, Baungon, and Kadingilan and 11 external study centers in Misamis Oriental including in Manticao, Libertad, Alubijid, Cagayan de Oro City, Salay, Talisayan, Sugbongcogon, Kinoguitan, Medina, Gingoog City, and Magsaysay.

Campus expansion
One of the effects of the phasing out, Dr. Cabanelez said, is the prospect of a growing need for a bigger campus. He cited the possible influx of students from other areas to BSU.

The university’s first priority, he said, is the plan to use the Grandstand Area as expansion site, which has to be discussed with the Provincial Government of Bukidnon.

He cited a plan, however, to allocate initial amount of P30 million to buy a lot for a new campus. He said the university has expressed interest to bid in a sequestered property in the downtown area, where there are already buildings in place. He cited that BSU is interested in other sites as prospects.

Mr. Dante Victoria, vice president for administration, planning and development said the university needs at least five to six hectares for expansion.

New course
Dr. Cabañelez said the university is also offering Bachelor of Science in Entertainment and Multimedia Computing (EMC) with two major fields namely, Digital Animation and Game Development starting June 2015 in response to an invitation by CHED to be at pace with the trend of the times.

Mr. Victoria said the course will be under the College of Arts and Sciences – Information Technology Department.

BS Development Communication students of Bukidnon State University attend a special lecture on videography by a Canadian film maker who is in Bukidnon for a project| Bukidnon News.Net photo by Walter I. Balane

BS Development Communication students of Bukidnon State University attend a special lecture on videography by a Canadian film maker who is in Bukidnon for a project| Bukidnon News.Net photo by Walter I. Balane

According to CHED Memorandum Order No. 02 Series of 2014, the field of Entertainment and Multimedia Computing is a relatively new but dynamic field. CHED said the two major fields under the course are the bases for the two sub-sectors of the Philippine Information Technology (IT) industry.

“These are promising areas where the local industry is experiencing fast growth and where the potential to capture a bigger slice of the global market is quite high,” according to the CHED order.

CHED added that they recognize the need to be responsive according to the current needs of the country.

“Hence it is essential and important that the country’s Entertainment and Multimedia Computing capability should be continually developed and strengthened to be at par globally,” the order added.
Dr. Cabañelez added that they have a plan to upgrade the university’s community radio station DXBU to maximize its usefulness for the university and the community.

Vertical articulation
Dr. Cabañelez added that among the changes in the university’s organizational structure is the application of vertical articulation in the management of its academic programs. He said the chairpersons of the undergraduate degree course will also be heading the university’s graduate programs of the same course.

He cited as example Dr. Lorenzo Dinlayan III, who was designated as chair of the College of Business Administration, Hospitality, and Public Governance (CBAHPG) public administration department. He will also chair the Master’s and Doctorate degree programs.

“It’s more challenging – more work but it is within their capability,” he said.

Research, Development, and Training Unit
Dr. Cabañelez also changed the university’s Research and Development Unit (RDU) into the Research Development and Training Unit (RDTU), still under Dr. Joy Mirasol.

He said it is time to help the unit train the university’s researchers considering that they have the capacity and the tools.

He said the unit will also be a potential income generating project (IGP) of the university considering that the university was involved with different research projects recently.

More scholarships
He added that the university is also ushering in more scholars with the influx of additional P23 million fund from CHED from different sources, mostly congressmen for school year 2015 to 2016.He said more funds are expected to come in.

Promissory notes, OK; get it from the deans
Dr. Cabañelez vowed during the selection process for the next BSU president not to increase tuition fee. But his strategy is to strengthen collection efficiency. He told this reporter that so far the university has collectibles of P10 million.

He clarified that the university did not stop accepting promissory notes but he delegated it to the deans.

He admitted that collection is not the responsibility of the deans but he decided to involve the deans of the different academic units to facilitate approving promissory notes from students with payables to the university. He said it was meant to empower the deans so they can help remind the students. He said this is an additional opportunity to meet parents.

“The deans can check which ones have valid reasons. Those who they think needed assistance they can recommend to the Office of Student Services (OSS) to be student assistants,” he added.

He said many BSU graduates have yet to pay for their tuition that’s why they still could not get their transcript of records and diploma.

“I want to help. We can give certification stating they have graduated just so they can find initial employment. But we can’t give them the transcript yet,” he added.

Dr. Cabanelez said he has big challenges ahead in his four-year term but he was thankful that he got the full support of the BSU community and the rest of the community in Bukidnon.

He said he will increase his use of prayer to gain strength to face the big challenges of his job.

“I came in with a very positive and welcoming environment. If everybody will help each other we can achieve our goals,” he added. (Walter I. Balane/BukidnonNews.Net)