Serving the country and contributing to national development
The university has a long tradition of community service, provision of expertise and significantcontributions to national d
evelopment. It has provided a large number of the country’s political
leaders, great thinkers, scientists, artists, critics and dissenters as well.
All our CU’s render assistance to communities, local governments and national institutions. Many
of these patriotic contributions are unheralded, unnoticed, uncounted, and if I may say, underpaid oreven unpaid.Periodic assessments of these contributions can be made and different experiences shared so thewheel need not be reinvented and successful innovations can be replicated.
The UP Charter mandates the university to “regularly study the state of the nation in relation to itsquest for national development…and give advice and recommendations to Congress and th
ePresident of the Philippines." My vision is that of a UP which will conduct a comprehensive reviewon an annual, biennial basis which will involve all the constituent universities.
Responding to changing demands
I envision an agile UP responding to changing demands and expectations. For example, it cancontribute significantly to the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals. The target date is2015. Thus far the targets on poverty, health-particularly infant and maternal mortality-education,nutrition and dreaded diseases are at risk.Beyond MDGs, we have the threats of climate change, a looming fiscal crisis, intractable problemsof governance, an economy plagued by unemployment and inequality, and urgent issues of justiceand peace.The University, with its 258 undergraduate and 438 graduate programs, 3,648 faculty members,10,394 administrative and research personnel, and more than 50,000 of the brightest young peoplein the country is the richest resource which can be utilized to help solved our multiple crises.During the first forum last Monday, I specifically mentioned U.P. Los Baños and its enormous
capacity for contributing to national development. Let’s look at UP Diliman this time. Any
president can name any national problem and you can be sure there is a college or unit which hasthe professional capacity to respond with analyses and recommendations.Are we looking for answers to persistent poverty? We have no less than 7 colleges and units in theManagement and Economics cluster who can help search for the answers. Corruption and othergovernance problems? NCPAG, College of Social Science and Philosophy, the Department of Political Science can help in understanding the terrible blight. The deteriorating state of education?Our own College of Education which can lead the search for answers.
The other CU’s are just as capable of responding to escalating demands for UP excellence.