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The LaSallian June 2005

The LaSallian June 2005

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FELICE ANN CARIASO ARVIN ALCANAR JO
New COE Dean wins at NAST
BY FELICE ANN CARIASO
Shortly after being proclaimed as the new Dean of the College of Engineering, Dr.Pag-asa Gaspillo of the Chemical Engineer-ing Department has reaped yet anotherhonor. According to the DLSU Newslet-ter, Dr. Gaspillo won the grand prize atthe fifth National Academy of Science and
SC calls for greater transparency
SC, Admin disagree on transparency issue
P
rompted by administrative decisions and policies last school year that allegedly by-passed them, the Student Council (SC) is pushing for representation in “more pow-erful councils” this year. SC President Army Padilla called for greater transparency from the Administration, this in spite of the fact that students are represented in alluniversity committees. “There’s still more powerful councils or groups in the admin whereinthe students are not represented, that decide on matters,” she reasoned out.Padilla identified the Operations Council,Council of Deans, and Board of Trustees asthe university bodies which have superior deci-sion-making functions in the University. TheOperations Council is headed by Executive Vice President Dr. Carmelita Quebengco andis composed mainly of administrative officials.This body is primarily responsible for financialdecisions. The latest instance of the Council’sactions is the purchase and installation of theClosed Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras,estimated to cost around one million pesos,despite the call for austerity by DLSU SystemPresident Bro. Armin Luistro FSC.The Council of Deans (COD) meanwhileis composed of the deans from the six col-leges, the Dean of Student Affairs, as well asa representative from the Faculty Association(FA). This group is considered as the highestdecision-making body in DLSU. It may berecalled that the COD reversed the decisionof the Discipline Office (DO) in the celebratedDasha Boulton case. Finally, prominent figures,alumni, administrators, and Christian Brothersmake up the Board of Trustees, which overseesmajor decisions.
Strong student representation
Padilla admitted that some decisions last year were not consulted with the SC, suchas the shift to the Transformative LearningPedagogy, though in principle the SC hasnothing against it. But Padilla stated that notall decisions made were without student repre-sentation, such as the purchase and installationof CCTV cameras. She added that then SC VP-Operations Aikee Esmeli actually repre-sented the SC in the process of making the saiddecision but failed to properly communicatethe matter to the EXECOM in order to makea stand. Thus, she emphasized that the SC’sgoal is the manner of representation and notmerely the number of student representativesin university bodies.On its part, the SC is trying to achievedemocratic, effective, and efficient studentgovernance through accountability andtransparency of its officers. To prove that they  want to heighten the accountability of SCOfficers, Padilla said that this school year only Legislative Assembly (LA) Representatives andExecutive Committee (EXECOM) Membersof the SC will be allowed to act as studentrepresentatives in University Committees. Inthe past, appointed officers or lay persons of the officers’ choice have represented the SCin the committees. Lack of prior knowledge,concern, and accountability prompted the SCto discontinue the said practice. 
Sufficient transparency
The FA, on the other hand, does not sharethe SC’s push for greater transparency in theUniversity. Ramon Enriquez, FA President,recounted their negotiation with the Adminis-tration for their new faculty manual which took effect this school year. He said that except fora misinterpretation regarding the provision of requiring faculty members to earn a doctoraldegree in order to achieve full-time status,the negotiation went well as the Administra-tion was very open to their proposals and vice versa. “I feel that they [the Administration]have been very transparent in telling us whatthey plan to do in the University,” Enriquezended.Jose Ronello Bartolome, CCS faculty, be-lieves that the Administration is transparent;however, it is a delayed transparency. Duringthe CCS-COE merger talks, many CCS faculty and students were confused as to where therumors originated. The Administration keptsilent at this early stage. (See article on merg-ers, page 7) 
Transparency is a compromise
Bro. Armin meanwhile believes thattransparency is not making everything publicbut rather giving access to full information topeople entitled to it and requires dialogue.He asserted that this kind of transparency ispresent. “We are not hiding anything, butsometimes people are protective of informationbecause it is also used by other groups in the
 
MICHELLINE KUON
CCTV cameras installed despite SC opposition
Despite steady but overdue opposition by the Student Council(SC) to the acquisition of Closed Circuit Television CameraSystem (CCTV), installation of the surveillance camera systemaround DLSU will still push through. A total of 32 camerasare scheduled to be fully installed in designated strategic placesaround the University within the first term of this school year.The CCTV camera is a modern technology wherein camerasare linked to monitors with constant connection. These camerasare mainly used for visual surveillance designed to monitor allthe variety of rooms, spaces and activities.
The SC’s plight
The SC believes that this undertaking is an irony to the Administration’s upholding of austerity measures. With theUniversity trying to cut down on expenses, such as water andelectricity, the installation of CCTV cameras would certainly en-tail not only a shelling out of money to purchase the equipment,but also additional consumption of electricity.Furthermore, SC President Army Padilla states that, “It[installation of CCTV cameras] would [also] create a culture where someone is watching you all the time, thus, hampering aliberal environment.”Padilla believes the students were not properly representedat the time the committee was discussing the acquisition of theCCTV cameras. According to her, “it was never brought up inthe EXECOM [Executive Committee] meeting last year andother officers did not know about it.”However, since the necessary pieces of equipment have beenbought and are already being installed, the SC only hopes thatthe CCTV cameras are going to be used for the purpose and onthe designated places they are meant for.No one is above the law.The Eleventh Division of the Court of Appeals found De La SalleUniversity (DLSU) guilty of unfair labor practice against the DLSUEmployee’s Association-NAFTEU (DLSUEA-NAFTEU) in a decisionrendered March 4, 2005.DLSU had previously filed a petition to reverse the rulings of De-partment of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Patricia SantoTomas dated November 17, 2003 and January 20, 2004, which thecourt denied.The 2003 ruling declared that DLSU was guilty of Unfair LaborPractice by refusing to bargain collectively and by interfering with theDLSUEA members’ right to self-organization. DLSU filed a motion forreconsideration following this ruling, arguing that collective bargainingrequires the proclamation of DLSUEA’s elected officers. Since proclama-tion of elected officers had not yet occurred, the University could notcollectively bargain with the Union.However, the 2004 ruling of the DOLE Secretary denied the Uni- versity’s motion because the “law and the rules prohibit the filing of any further motion to reconsider,” as the 10-page decision stated. The courtaffirmed the ruling by stating in its decision that, “non-proclamation of the newly elected union officers cannot be used as an excuse to fulfill theduty to bargain collectively.”Moreover, the court stated that DLSU violated the union members’right to self-organization when it removed the decision of the Secretary of Labor dated July 28, 2003 from the Union’s Bulletin Board. Thisdecision ordered the school to stop from refusing to bargain collectively and to resume negotiations with the union. Likewise, it happened whenthe University harassed union members from freely campaigning in thecampus during the election for union officers and when it has shown
DLSU guilty of unfairlabor practice
ROBERT ROYCE ZUÑIGA
SEE NEW DEAN, PAGE 2SEE DLSU GUILTY, PAGE 3SEE CCTV, PAGE 3SEE SC CALLS, PAGE 3
 You're being watched!
Newly-installed CCTV camerashover above the University's vital installations.
PHOTO BY AMANDA VALENZUELA
Bastion of freedom.
This silhouette of the Lapu-lapu shrine along Roxas Blvd. is aconstant reminder of our ancestors' valiant fight for freedom.
PHOTO BY AITHNE JAEN LAO
LaSallian
The
VOL. XLVI NO. 1
THE OFFICIAL STUDENT PUBLICATION OF DE LA SALLE UNIVERSITY
10 JUNE 2005
 
A
re we even among the best in the country?DLSU was ranked a dismal 16th in a purportedCommission on Higher Education (CHED) study listing the top 20 colleges and universities nationwide. Thelist was supposedly based on the average passing rate of grad-uates in board examinations conducted by the ProfessionalRegulation Commission (PRC) through 1992 to 2001.DLSU was ranked behind 15 other universities nationwideincluding UP schools which grabbed the top three spotsand Ateneo de Manila University (Loyola) at sixth place.However, the list stated cannot be considered as an officiallist for its origin is not accessible.Last May 9, Boo Chanco, a columnist for The PhilippineStar, published the list in his column despite admitting thathe was unable to confirm the list independently. It was statedin his column that one need not spend a fortune in tuitionand other fees in the so called exclusive schools in MetroManila because there are a lot of good schools out there inthe countryside. Particularly, the statement “there is evenone college on the list from Butuan that I have not heardof (Urios College), and it did better than La Salle” caughtthe prying eyes of the administration, which immediately responded to defend the University.
In defense of DLSU
Br. Roly Dizon, FSC, former CHED chairperson andformer DLSU System President, spotted several statisticaldefects that made the list misleading.In a message posted by Br. Roly at the onelasalle website,he observed that the passing rate used as criterion for thelist “tries to mix apples with oranges and come up with ahybrid that does not capture reality.” Board examinationshave several categories based on the number of examinees.Therefore, a school that boasts a passing rate of 100 percent yet has only one examinee would not necessarily mean it isbetter than another with 80 test takers and a passing rate of 85 percent. This was also brought up by Br. Armin Luistro,DLSU System President and EVP Dr. Carmelita Quebengcoin an email response to Chanco's column. Br. Roly alsostated that since the overall passing rate is different for eachcourse, combining all these passing rates would make for aninaccurate perception of the colleges concerned.Br. Armin and Dr. Quebengco further observed thatschools which offer more courses with licensure examinationstend to have a higher ranking.It may be recalled that Time Magazine came up witha listing of the top universities in Asia in 2000. Employing vastly different criteria which included research, studentselectivity and Internet bandwidth among others, DLSUemerged as the top private university in the country, andsecond among all local universities next only to UP. ShanghaiJiao Tong University also performs annual ranking of worlduniversities. In both lists, passing rates for board examina-tions was not a criterion for the ranking.
Study ranks DLSU 16thamong RP colleges
 An academic bridge program for incoming freshmen mari-time students was recently facilitated by seventeen faculty members from the College of Science (COS) and the De-partment of English and Applied Linguistics (DEAL).Now in its second year, the venture, more formally known as “The Maritime Academic Ramp Project,” servesto improve maritime students’ academic competency tonear the level required by STCW 95, the global seafaringstandard. A 2001 Warsash Maritime Centre feasibility study entitled “Improving the Training and Supply of FilipinoSenior Officers Qualified at the STCW 95 ManagementLevel” recognized the “knowledge gap” between gradu-ating Filipino high school students and the STCW95 re-quirement.Fifty students from the Maritime Academy of Asia andthe Pacific (MAAP)–Kamaya Point comprised the firstbatch of students who underwent an intensive two-monthreview in English, Mathematics (Arithmetic, Algebra,and Trigonometry), and Science (Physics). Post-courseevaluation subsequently showed significant improvementin the areas of Language Usage, Numerical Reasoning,and Reading Comprehension, particularly among initiallow scorers. Bolstered by its previous success, the program went on to include students from the University of Cebu,John B. Lacson Academy, and the Philippine MerchantMarine Academy.The academic ramp initiative traces its roots to Novem-ber of 2002, when DLSU alumnus Michael Estaniel andCapt. Helmut Sallaba, representing the Philippine MaritimeEducation and Training Foundation Inc. (PMF) Board of Trustees, met with DLSU-M Executive Vice President Dr.Carmelita Quebengco to discuss the University’s possibleinvolvement in the development and testing of an academicramp curriculum for maritime students. Dr. Quebengcothen referred the matter to COS Dean Gerardo Janairo, who in turn spearheaded talks between the PMF and COSadministrators, culminating in the project’s presentation tothe funding agency last May 2003.The project was done in partnership with the Inter-national Maritime Training Trust (IMTT), PMF, and theMAAP. COS Vice Dean Voltaire Mistades acted as theproject coordinator.
COS, DEAL tutor maritime frosh
PAULO JOSE MUTUC
M
ia, a College of Business and Economics (CBE)student, has been lining up since 5:30 in themorning to obtain a number card distributedat 7:00am that would allow her to adjust. She was able toadjust six hours later.Due to poor information dissemination, implementa-tion of the online regular adjustment caused long lines of confused students during the late adjustment period thathappened from May 23 to 27.The Enrollment Committee for SY 2004-2005 approvedthe implementation of the new online regular adjustmentsystem. Last May 21, the online regular adjustment period was only for students who incurred failures during the thirdterm of the SY 04-05.
Result of Miscommunication
The Office of the University Registrar (OUR) an-nounced the changes through dlsu_announce and otheronline mailing lists to the Lasallian community in March.However, Student Council VP for Academics Oliver To feltthat the OUR’s publicity effort was not enough.Students who wanted to adjust but did not incur any failure during the previous term thought they would be ableto adjust during regular adjustment. Since the informationregarding the changes did not reach all students, thesestudents later realized on the regular adjustment day itself,forcing them to adjust during the late adjustment period.Two University Academic Calendars circulated in theinternet caused further confusion among students.
Rushed implementation?
University Registrar Edwin Santiago stated there was norush in implementing the online regular adjustment system.The system was already prepared for implementation two years ago. It did not push through due to the request of astudent representative for valid reasons.It was only during last SY that the Enrollment Com-mittee finally agreed to implement the said system. He alsostressed that former VP for Academics Arianne Jimenez waspresent when the implementing guidelines were discussedin the committee.
No Questions Asked
Because of the sudden upsurge of students wanting toadjust for convenience, the Enrollment Committee has de-cided to entertain students, who wanted to adjust in the lateadjustment period, without questions asked but in return aP150 fee called the Late Adjustment Fee. Moreover, students who adjusted are also required to pay P70 for the reprintingof their Enrollment Assessment Form (EAF).Assuming that 1000 students underwent late adjust-ment, and each of these students paid P220 for the late ad- justment fee and the EAF reprinting, the OUR has generatedan amount of P220,000 for the late adjustment.To believes that the root of the problem must be ad-dressed. “Why is there a need to pay for reprinting of EAFand late adjustment fee? And where does this fee go? Willit go back to the student services as well?” Currently, Toassumes that the fees go to College Funds, but the SC willconduct a further study on this matter.
Preventive measures
Because of the tricky adjustment process, the late adjust-ment was extended to five days as requested by To. Thisallowed most students to adjust their schedules despite theinitial confusion.For the meantime, To encourages students who adjusteddue to new or dissolved sections and other unexpected casesto approach their respective College Assembly Presidents orthe Office of Vice President for Academics (OVP-Acad) incases that the late adjustment fee was not waived.On June 14, the Enrollment Committee of the OVP- Acad will have a meeting to draft a proposal to lengthen on-line adjustment to three days, where one day will be given tono failures and cross enrollees. Further, specific adjustmentissues per department like CBE quota grades will be covered. As of press time, the OVP-Acad has drafted a system whereinthe Reprinting fee of the EAF will be removed.
Old Adjustment Trends
Prior to the new policy, adjustments are done after every online enrollment. Adjustment is divided into three periods.The Early Adjustment period is designed for students withunder load schedules (less than 12 units), transferees andreturnees. If a student has incurred any failures during thepast term, they will be entertained during the regular adjust-ment period. Finally, the late adjustment period was only forstudents, who belong to dissolved sections during the first week of classes for the opening of new sections.However, a new adjustment trend began to surface, which caught the attention of the OUR. Many students whoavailed of late adjustment did not belong to the category of students the period originally catered to. The EnrollmentCommittee saw that majority of students’ purpose in adjust-ing was for convenience and no longer the reasons that they  were intended for.
Adjustment difficultiescontinue to haunt students
ROSS VERGEL DELANTAR AND GAYLE GUZMAN
“It has come to my attention that some of the Student Council [SC] officers are violating the ethical standards of the Student Council when it comes to partisan-ship.” This is what Arden Atienza, Chairperson of the Ethics Committee, voicedin his letter to the SC.Dan Dizon, College Assembly President of the College of Engineering(COE), said the issue started when Chuck Chang of COE, a Santugon member, wore yellow in one of the SC meetings. Yellow, as well as blue, is the party colorof Santugon. Atienza stressed that SC officers should wear only white collared shirt to SCmeetings. Recruitment for one’s political organization is barred, as well takingpart in party-related campaigning while in office.Dizon, the only non-Tapat member of the SC-Executive Committee, andSantugon's Anina Rubio, batch representative of 58th Eng, observed that Atienzadisplayed paranoia in his letter. Dizon claimed that color of shirt is trivial, butparanoia politicized and “blew up” the whole issue. Rubio furthered that theincident was coincidental and could not be used for campaigning purposes.On the contrary, Jhoan Lim, LA Rep of Tapat, agreed with Atienza. Limreasoned that Atienza, also a Tapat member, was just doing his job. VP-Activi-ties Simoun Ferrer had laid down specific rules on attire, Lim recalled. Althoughparanoia may exist, the policy is a preventive measure aimed to promote the SC’sthrust of non-partisanship.It may be recalled that partisanship was a stormy issue in the SC two yearsago. Tapat actively pursued partisanship to let student officers act according totheir party affiliations. The Executive Committee disapproved of partisanship.
DONELLE GAN
Technology (NAST) Hugh Greenwood Environmental Science Award for herinventions on wastewater treatment. The event was held at the Traders HotelManila last April 21.Dr. Gaspillo’s works were just one of the many outstanding works presentedin the Hugh Greenwood Environmental Awards. Launched in 2001, the eventrecognizes inventions and works that contribute to environmental protectionand conservation.The COE Dean and also full-time professor of the Chemical EngineeringDepartment revealed that she began conducting some of her researches fifteen years ago. Her other works were done in collaboration with undergraduate,graduate and post-graduate students of DLSU.NAST deemed Gaspillo’s researches regarding water potability and wastewa-ter purification as essential to life. In Gaspillo’s presentation entitled “Researchon Water and Wastewater Treatment Processes: A Consolidated Study,” whereGaspillo mentioned the effects of both domestic and industrial wastewater to theenvironment. She also came out with possible solutions to reduce water pollu-tion, such as “Chromium Reduction by Chemical Precipitation and ChromiumRecovery by Ion-Exchange Method” and many more.These contributions to water and wastewater management bagged for herthe grand prize, which included a plaque and a $1,000 cash prize.
 AILEEN KRISTEL CHAM
negative sense,” Br. Armin defended. According to Br. Armin, the transparency he wants to push this year is oneinvolving a system-wide database where vital information from all eight unitscan be collated, analyzed, stored, and retrieved efficiently to aid decision-mak-ers like himself. He calls this the Information System, one of the three essentialfunctions of the approach that he plans to centralize. The two other plans arepooling investment funds together to obtain higher yield, and centralizing pur-chasing activities to significantly lessen lag time between requisition and releaseof items. Any savings from these activities earn will be translated into additionsto the endowment fund for scholarships.Interestingly, while the SC is working for representation in the OperationsCouncil and Board of Trustees, Bro. Armin thinks that sectoral representationis not the best way of being efficient in decision-making. He said that it is betterto “put in the persons who know... professionals, and put them accountable tothe bigger group... otherwise we won’t be able to move.”EVP Dr. Carmelita Quebengco stated "In the spirit of transparency... thereare no secrets in our campus." However as of press time, the EVP has yet toanswer
The LaSallian
's additional questions.The Student Council (SC) and the Discipline Office (DO) convened last May 27 to discuss the issue regarding the banning of slippers in the University.The meeting took place for the SC and the DO to address the growingconcern of students regarding the policy. It may be observed that in the firstfew weeks of classes, Discipline Officers performed rampant reprimanding of students caught wearing inappropriate slippers.However, students who have been caught until this week violating thenew policy will not be given a minor offense.Moreover, the discussion between the two sectors centered on the clari-fication of what kind of slippers would be appropriate inside the campus andthose that are not.In line with this, the SC, as part of their mandate “to consistently protectand defend the rights of the students,” proposed certain specifications that would determine the slippers considered as inappropriate.
What to Avoid
Following their deliberation, the SC and the DO have come up with threequalifications that must be met in order to classify a slipper as appropriate orinappropriate.Thong style slippers, which have “straps joint at one point between thefirst two toes”, as well as those that are entirely made of rubber, synthetic ornot, and foam, are considered inappropriate. According to the agreement, the “entirety of the slippers is limited to whatis visible to the eye” as well. Also listed as a prohibited kind of slipper are flats with wedges and a baseheight exceeding three-fourths of an inch. Slippers with soles that are flat onthe ground and have a base height of three-fourths of an inch, on the otherhand, are appropriate. All other slippers that do not fall under the categories that the DO andSC have agreed on are also regarded as appropriate and could be worn insideDLSU.
Implementation
Student Council President Army Padilla, through an email, stated that theDO will not catch students wearing inappropriate slippers for the next two weeks. This is to allow for the dissemination of the agreed-upon policy. Fullimplementation of the policy will start on June 13.
DO, SC identify inappropriate slippers
ROBERT ROYCE ZUÑIGA
Protect student rights, uphold stu-dents’ welfare and encourage socialchanges. The Student Council’s (SC) yearlong thrusts will revolve aroundthese main points.
Goals
 According to SC President Army Padilla, the SC should provide quality service through protecting studentrights and welfare. In line with this,there will be reviews on the mandateand performances of all offices andsectors inside the University. Theresearch on the University StudentGovernment (USG) will be continued,as well as seeking for the approval of the Student’s Code within DLSU.Improvement regarding policies onactivity approval will be reviewed andan Activities Monitoring Board Grad-ing System is being intensified underthe Office of Student Activities (OSAc)and SC. Some former projects suchas the Carpool Program will also bestrengthened.
 A pro-student University
One of the SC’s main goals is toobtain maximum student representa-tion in all university decision-makingbodies. In accordance to this, the SC will pursue to have student represen-tation in the Enforcement Section of the Discipline Office (DO) and in theBoard of Trustees.The Office of the President(OPRES) will lobby for the removalof certain unreasonable rules in theStudent Handbook, for instance, therule that slaps a minor offense forleaving or losing the ID three times.Furthermore, the autonomy of the SCand the Council of Student Organiza-tions (CSO) will be upheld.For the Legislative Assembly’s part,Padilla stated that it will discuss reso-lutions directly affecting the students.Particularly, resolutions calling for therevision of the Student Handbook, theremoval of the power of the Office of Student Activities (OSAc) to approveor disapprove student activities, and toreview the enrollment procedure willbe put forward.
For affordable education and a primemover institution
 With regards to tuition fee, thefight continues for removal of un-necessary or unjustifiable fees as wellas maximizing student representationduring tuition fee increase deliberationsin the MSCB. The student body willalso be provided with academic manu-als to guard their academic freedom.The grievance system will be reformedand strengthened.The SC will prepare standards of education to ensure that instructorshired are well-equipped for teaching.Moreover, a stricter faculty hiringprocess and the evaluation through theInstitutional Testing and EvaluationOffice is also at hand.
Leadership and Duty
To reinforce duty for the country,the SC will continue to press the caseof the Student’s Code to Congress. Inaddition, the DLSU SC will spearheada movement for citizen empowermentby establishing an alliance called thePhilippine Alliance of Students To- wards Empowerment. Additionally,the SC will intensify ties with other SCsfrom different universities to fight forstudents’ rights.
SC thrusts focus on student welfare
JOYCE ANNE ALFONSO
partiality to the Aliazas group by allowing them to campaign without restraints inside the campus and allowed them to useits facilities for such function at the same time.
Grave Abuse of Discretion
Following the denial of its motion for reconsideration,DLSU filed a case against DOLE Secretary Patricia Sto.Tomas for committing grave abuse of discretion in holdingthe University liable for unfair labor practice last March 18,2005.The University’s lawyers argued that the opinion of Bu-reau of Labor Relations (BLR) Director Cacdac, from whichthe DOLE Secretary allegedly based her conclusion that there was no void in DLSUEA leadership, could not hold waterbecause it was not an official Order or Decision.However, the Fifteenth Division of the Court of Appeals, which tried the case, had an opposing view.“We find that the BLR Director’s statement in said letter-order, concerning the status of the Union’s leadership, even if it were to be considered a mere opinion, must nonetheless begiven weight in the resolution cases coming within his juris-diction and specialized field for expertise,” the court said.Furthermore, they ruled that the DOLE Secretary didnot commit a mistake when it ordered the University tocommence negotiations with the Union because DLSU’srefusal to discuss despite the repeated demands of the Unionconstituted a violation of its duty to bargain. Since the courtfound that the Labor Secretary did not commit grave abuseof discretion, the dismissal of DLSU’s petition followed. After the election of DLSUEA’s new set of officers last Au-gust 28, 2003, the University has resumed negotiations withthe Union and has normalized its relation with it hitherto.
FROM DLSU GUILTY, PAGE 1FROM NEW DEAN, PAGE 1
COE students continueto top licensure exams
DLSU grabbed the highest passing rates in the recently concluded board examsin engineering courses in their respective categories. Categories are based onnumber of examinees.
Electronics and Communications Engineering
In the recently concluded April 2005 Electronics and Communication En-gineering (ECE) board examination, DLSU maintained first place in the 50-99examinees category gaining a 77 percent passing rate against the national passingrate of 33.6 percent. Eight students entered the top 20, which included the topspot grabbed by Elvin Ivan Uy followed by Jeffrey Tan at second. Other students who entered the top 20 are Christian Barlis (ninth), Eduardo Perez and Karen Villanueva (11th), Frederick Adan and Richardson So (13th), Joseph Viernes(16th), and Alain Abitria (19th).However, the department has been facing sharp declines in its passing ratein recent years, the worst of which occurred during the April 2003 exam witha passing rate of only 83.75 percent (against the national passing rate of 35.99percent) from April 2002’s passing rate of 91.36 percent (against the nationalrate of 43.51 percent). Even with a declining passing rate, a DLSU ECE studentstill topped all test takers in the April Board exams since 2000 except for April2003. ECE professor Jonathan Coronel stated that the department still gainsthe highest passing rate in all categories in terms of number of examinees despitethe decline.
Civil Engineering
In the May 2005 Civil Engineering Board Examination, DLSU again per-formed well, gaining an 87 percent ranking against the national passing rate of 35.76 percent. Fourty of 46 passed the exam. Allen Robert Adecer grabbed thehighest place among DLSU students at seventh place followed by Roger LanotOpina at 16th place. Like other Engineering departments, the Civil Engineering(CIV) department has also experienced slight decreases in the passing rate duringthe May Board Exams, where regular students usually take the exams. The depart-ment has been obtaining a 90 percent passing rate in May 2002 and 2003.
Mechanical engineering
 Another engineering department whose students recently took the boardexam is the Mechanical Engineering (ME) Department. Concluded last April,the department acquired an 83 percent passing rate against the national passingrate of 45.74 percent, where 30 out of 36 Lasallian examinees passed. Not to beleft out of the gradual decline, the passing rate decreased 10 percent from April2004’s 93 percent (against the nation’s 47 percent passing rate). Mark AaronChan grabbed the highest place among DLSU takes this year at third, followedby Anthony Joseph Zara at 10th place.
 AILEEN KRISTEL CHAM
But still
Opposing the student body’s opinion, Irwin Jurilla, Com-puter Facilities and Operations (CFO) Head of the Informa-tion Technology Center (ITC), stated, “The administrationhas good reasons for having the CCTV [cameras]. The systemis intended to be used for those reasons [monitoring possibletheft] only, so it can neither be misused nor abused.”Jurilla said that CCTV installation started last April. Theinstallation is 80 percent complete and will be completed thisJune, Engr. Gerardo Mendoza of the Physical Facilities Officesaid.Designated areas where CCTV cameras are being installedare hallways with rooms containing expensive equipment, suchas Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) projectors and VHS players.CCTV cameras will also be installed within the vicinity of computer laboratories and SMART classrooms. Specified placesare Miguel and Gokongwei buildings, where most theft caseshave been reported. With the monitors to be stationed at their office, 24-houroperation of the system will be placed in the hands of the Safety and Security Office (SSO). The 32-camera CCTV system willbe monitored via two personal computers, with each computerdisplaying 16 feeds.Though there are still no guidelines as to its operation,SSO Director Dionisio Escarez believes that the monitoringdevice will be utilized mainly for the purpose of preventingpossible theft and robbery cases. Jurilla added that guidelines will be created soon.
(EDITOR’S NOTE: Kuon tried to obtain more information regarding the CCTV installation. However, Mr. Jurilla passed Kuon on to Engr. Gerardo Mendoza of the Physical Facilities Of-  fice. Engr. Mendoza, in turn, passed Kuon back to Jurilla. Both claimed the other knew more.)
FROM CCTV, PAGE 1FROM SC CALLS, PAGE 1
 
 ARTWORK BYIAN ROMAN
Hard at work.
SC President Army Padilla has placedstudent welfare as her top priority.
PHOTO BYPAULDARWYNN GARILAOPHOTO BYLUISDE VERA
Man of peace.
Aman stares at the sunset as wavescrash onto his feet.
IMAGE COURTESYOF STUDENT COUNCIL
Partisanship issue opens anew
 
10 June 2005210 June 20053
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 NIVERSIT
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The LaSallian
U
 NIVERSIT
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The LaSallian
 
First day funk and more
L
ast month, columnist BooChanco of the Philippine Star wrote about a study ranking thecountry’s twenty best tertiary educational institutions. Thestudy, purportedly done by theCommission on Higher Educationand the Professional RegulationsCommission, based its ranking onthe schools’ average passing ratein board examinations from 1992to 2001.DLSU was ranked 16
th
, way behind three UP (ranked first tothird) and two Ateneo (ranked sixth and seventh) campuses. I can only imaginethe administration’s disbelief at this result, something that I can infer basedfrom reactions posted after the column was published.(Keep in mind that the writer hasn’t confirmed the study yet, a fact that was later repeated in the writer’s reply to my e-mail about the column.) While there is much bickering about the credibility of this study,the results of another interesting study made its way to the pages of thePhilippine Daily Inquirer last May 29. Undersecretary Juan Miguel Luz of the Department of Education bared the results of the National AchievementTest in English, Math, and Science conducted among high school seniorsin March of 2004.Some might say that this study is irrelevant because it does not directly involve DLSU, but as I will present over the succeeding paragraphs, thishas major implications on the quality of education that the University canprovide for its students.The passing rate for the exam is 75 percent. The statistics are startling.Out of all the takers, only 12.9 percent passed the Math exam. I know thatmany of us are not adept at Math, and while that might lead us to understandsuch a turnout, consider that the Math passing grade is already the highestmark of the three areas. A dismal 6.8 percent passed the English exam, andan even more pathetic 0.7 percent passed the Science exam. Overall, only 2.1 percent passed.Translated, that means almost 90 percent of high school graduates needhelp with their Mathematical skills, almost 95 percent lack English languageproficiency, and nearly all of them do not know their Sciences well enough.This just affirms the result out of the 1998 and 2003 Trends in InternationalMath and Science Surveys that Filipino students are nearly below the pack asfar as skills in the Math and Sciences are concerned.The article went on to mention some interpretations out of the test results.In English, it said that there was a real comprehension problem. In Math,students had all sorts of problems computing for results, using formulas, andmanipulating numbers and equations. In Science, students were not able tomaster all areas, especially physics. In short, students were having all sorts of basic and higher order thinking problems. Another interesting tidbit was that none of the top 20 schools in thisexam come from Metro Manila. Many of them come from far-flung places,places that are certainly deprived of resources. The logical conclusion hereis that the lack of resources is not a hindrance to education. With the rightcommitment, education can be of high quality even outside the cities. Thisalso raises the concern that Metro Manila’s extremely crowded public schoolsmay be starting to prove detrimental to the Philippine educational system.Given these results, the Department of Education probed into the heartof the problem. The lack of classrooms, facilities, and materials has beenperpetually blamed for the poor education in the public school system. Yetit was puzzling to note that some schools fared poorly and some did welleven when all of them faced the same constraints. The cause was glaring:low reading levels brought down results across the board. This was logical,since one cannot expect students to answer complex problems competently if they cannot even understand them. Low reading levels among studentshas turned into a disaster for the educational system. What implications does it hold for DLSU? The lack of competenthigh school graduates obviously hinders our growth towards a world-classinstitution. Few world-class students can be produced if students come in with evident deficiencies in Math, English, and Science. As the number of good students dwindle, DLSU will be forced to compete for students that canmeet its higher academic standards and maintain its reputation. Also take intoconsideration that this paltry number of competent students will be dividedeven further into the various professions/fields of study that society needs.The fact that Metro Manila and other city-based high schools are notproducing quality graduates as expected also means that there will be fewerstudents who are both competent enough and can afford the exorbitantprices that the University is imposing among its freshmen. This would provedetrimental to DLSU’s efforts to meet its revenue targets while maintaininga base of quality students at the same time. Only time will tell if DLSU willbe forced to lower its standards because of what’s happening.Such a trend also requires the University to invest in programs that willmake sure its students can make it through the rigors of their respectivedegree programs. While the transformative learning pedagogy is a welcomeinitiative given that it encourages the development of critical thinking skills,I get the impression that some of the programs being included in it areremedial in nature.This puts the University in a bind: do we pursue our dreams or should we look the other way to address society’s needs? It is obvious that we can’tdo both. A push for world-class status would almost be like playing a blindear to the fact that our society has some very complicated problems at thegrassroots level. A push in the other direction would almost certainly requirelowering our standards and invest more in remedial programs. We are obviously making a fuss out of the ranking that came out of thefirst study presented earlier. Should a number one ranking be our goal, orshould our goal be to help develop as many great individuals as possible? What really matters to us?Before we push for greater transparency and other things that are morephysical and administrative in nature (such as our ranking as a Philippineuniversity), we should first look at where we’re headed in our educationalmission. This is DLSU’s most basic thrust, and some thinking is required inthis area more than ever as the University and the entire nation stands at acrossroads. The educational problem can already be felt, and it will only get worse. Which way do we go?
The great dilemma
Paul Darwynn GarilaoJose Paolo LacdaoLuis Emmanuel De VeraDonelle GanJuan Carlos ChavezEarlene Clarissa ChingJan Michael JaudianEric SiyAlejandro Almendras IVKristel Kaye Chua
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DITORS
 
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10 JUNE 2005
The LaSallian
 
has its editorial office at 502 Bro. Gabriel Connon Hall, De La SalleUniversity, 2401 Taft Avenue, Manila 1004. TLS can be contacted through telephonenumber 5244611 loc. 701, or through its e-mail address, the_lasallian@yahoo.com. All contributions are subject to editing for clarity or space. None of the contentsof this publication may be reprinted without the express written permission of theEditorial Board.
U
NIVERSITY
 
Joyce Anne Alfonso, Jan Wilfred Cariquitan, Felice Ann Cariaso,Lyanne Dela Cruz, Ross Vergel Delantar, Gayle Guzman, Arvin AlcanarJo, Michelline Kuon, Paulo Jose Mutuc, Robert Royce Zuñiga
M
ENAGERIE
Nancy Chua, Joseph Marc de Veyra, Franz Francisco Chan,Chris Gabriel, Rosanna Guintivano, Angeline Martha Manuel, AnneLorraine Ng, Claire Therese Ortega, Mariane Lourdes Perez, AnjeliPessumal, Karess Rubrico, Dianne Margareth Tang, Nicole Tangco
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PORTS
John de los Santos, Jhoanna Kay Leal, Don Eric Sta. Rosa,Reuben Ezra Terrado, Nikki Ann Mariel Tungol
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HOTO
Christopher Kison, Aithne Jaen Lao, Dan Joseph Nable, DianeLou Reyes, Ofelia Sta. Maria, Amanda Valenzuela
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RAPHICS
Patrick Joy Abanilla, Carvin Choa, Richard RustumGutierrez, Frank Herrera, Kenji Inukai, Kimberly Kha, Gene Carlo Magtoto,Christine Marie Mendoza, Rommel Mendoza, Ian Roman, Gerard PhilipSo Chan, Charm Ventura
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ENIOR
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Maria Michaela Ferrer, Ernestine Suzanne Teves,Meryll Anne Yan, Isabelle Regina Yujuico
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Rosanna Luz Valerio, Joel Orellana
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Fritzie Ian Paz-De Vera
LaSallian
The
The bastion of issue-oriented critical thinking.
 
To declare "no secrets inthe campus" is a grossact of insincerity.
EDITORIAL
T
he view from my silent observationpost tells me DLSU is like anautomobile. Now, one only needs tohave taken driving lessons in orderto drive a car. There is no need tounderstand how the engine works,or how the power is transmitted tothe wheels. As if in a car, students inDLSU are shown only the interior andthey are expected to enjoy the ride,from frosh to graduation. There isno encouraging them to step out andinspect what’s under the hood. This“passenger” mindset I believe hadcrept slowly through the years becauseof pop culture.I wonder how DLSU couldpropagate critical thinking in theclassroom (if it really does) and yetprovide glaring counterexamplesoutside of it.Consider the then-rumored mergerof the College of Engineering (COE)and the College of Computer Studies(CCS), now a defunct idea. When theissue was still hot, the Administrationkept completely silent about it. Only afew brave souls went ahead and sharedstories with the students.This issue was cleared with a toneof finality no student can question. Was the Administration transparentin this scenario? Delayed and selectivetransparency, yes. However, delayedtransparency is not transparency at all.It is useless. Keep a debatable issueunder wraps and release it only whenany inflow of ideas from the studentbody will not affect its outcome. Thismeans the Administration has an innatesense of distrust against the studentbody. It betrays disrespect for students’abilities to think critically for the futureof THEIR university.Consider the installment of theCCTV camera system. Up to now,the student body can only guess how much was actually spent for the system.Had it not been for a source, we wouldnever have known the winning bidalone cost DLSU 940,000 pesos. Callthat transparency!Furthermore, there was virtually no consultation of the student body in this acquisition. Two questions: Wasthe Administration expecting resistancefrom the student body, so they decidedto forego of this process? Or had Aikee Esmeli and company done onelousy task of student consultation/representation? Various policies that have takeneffect just this year include CCTV installment, dress code policy especially banning of slippers inside campus, andtransformative learning. Obviously,all these policies have started as mereideas by someone somewhere, justlike the merger rumors. Now, why does it seem that no matter how hardthe student body, represented by theStudent Council, tries to resist thesenew measures, all their efforts are in vain, at best only a compromise isachieved? This is what I think: There was minimal, if not non-existentstudent representation when the idea was at its infancy. This is the level whereonly members of the Administrationdiscuss and come up with conclusions.By the time the idea is presented tothe students, it has already been pre-finalized.This is like uprooting a tree that hasingrained its roots deep underground.Remember the Art of War: The bestgeneral wins with the least effort, thebest doctor cures before the symptomscome out. This tree should be uprooted while it is still young.This is why I hope Tapat’s ExecutiveBoard would deliver on its promise of having student representatives in severalimportant University committees/councils, like the Board of Trustees andthe Operations Council. Who knows where the next big addition to DLSU’sparadigms will be born? The student’s voice should be heard there.* * *I salute the guys at Microsoft forcoming up with one hell of a difficult yet fun Imagine Cup, Algorithmcategory. In turn, I wonder why DLSUrestricts Internet use so much. Allow me to connect the two sentences.Imagine Cup is a global competitionsponsored by Microsoft. There areseveral categories including businessplanning, rendering, software design,IT and algorithm. For the algorithmcategory I joined, there are threerounds: the elimination round open toeveryone internationally, the semifinalround open to the top 200 scorers inthe eliminations, and the finals open tothe six highest scorers in the semis.Sorry for self-congratulation, butI was the only Filipino who made itto the semifinal round. Now boththe elimination and semifinal roundare online (http://imagine.thespoke.net and http://www.wildnoodle.com/msic respectively). The semifinalround was in the form of a game calledHerbert (a robot program), and itrequired .NET framework installedin PCs. So much for up-to-datecomputers. The framework was noteven installed in Velasco computer labsthen! I had to bug one technician toallow me to install the update.The real problem was when ITCrequired everyone to log in usingtheir MyLaSalle account. Though I amnot a computer wizard, I experiencedfirsthand how this policy restrictsstudent activity on the Internet.Herbert, which runs directly fromthe Internet, could no longer run inany DLSU computer lab. And my Internet connection at home is as slow as a snail.This may be my personal ire, butI am quite sure that soon someone will have problems just like what Ihad. The ITC should carefully review its implementations to not severely delimit Internet use.
Delayed transparencyis not transparency atall.
Grab the wheelsStained image
Low reading levels hasturned into a disasterfor the educationalsystem.During enrolment oradjustment, I pity thosepeople who have onlyone failing subject.
I
mage is an abstract marketingtool used by universities to attractstudents, as well as establish an excellentreputation to companies and the worldat large. The good and ugly credentialsof a university are products of theimage that it has instituted throughthe years.Harvard University’s image asa trendsetter in law, medicine, andother related fields made it as a world-renowned university. MassachusettsInstitute of Technology is highly acclaimed for producing engineers andscientists that become Nobel awardees.Locally, UP is known for trainingthe
Iskolar ng Bayan 
, who study in anon-spoon feeding environment whilepaying very economized tuitions.De La Salle University (DLSU)has its distinct way of projecting agood image inside and outside theLasallian community. DLSU is already a trademark to high school studentsand well-known companies, sinceits image as a top-caliber university  is publicly accepted. Its tagline
Your Future Begins Here 
implies assuranceof employment after graduation.No doubt, image setting is abrainchild of the Administration. Itis their expertise to boost the goodimage of the University. When goodnews such as an upgraded level of accreditation, high scores in boardexams, or UAAP championships glorify the University, the Administration isquick to broadcast its achievements.But when the school image ishumiliated at the national level, the Admin is quick to defend its side andclarifying issue. A recent proof of this was the Admin’s immediate responseto Boo Chanco’s May 9 column, whichranked DLSU based on PRC data.This, of course, is a natural reaction,since negative feedback pose a threatto its standing.The Admin practices a greateramount of sensitivity when dealing with controversial issues to safeguardthe school image. But there is a paradoxin the Admin’s statement that “thereare no secrets in the campus.” Yet, if  we ask concerned parties regardinghard-hitting issues, they are awkwardto give any related information.In our series of articles regardingthe merging phenomenon, someadministrators whom
The LaSallian
 interviewed told our correspondentsnot to report on the issue, because of its controversial nature. Even collegesupervisors reminded their subordinatesnot to disclose any facts, because they are an “administrative concern.” Infact, a department chair commented,
Wala kayong pakilalam diyan.Pinagbawalan kaming magsalita.
Sometimes, concerned people only answer the questions that would favorthem or elate their status.To declare that there are "...nosecrets in the campus” is a gross act of insincerity. Observing its context, thephrase is a relative “secret” and not anabsolute one. The proximity of secrecy is only confined to the higher operatorsof this University.By nature, protecting the University image requires a level of compromiseand the major tradeoff is transparency.The Admin believes that the more they answer delicate campus matters, thegreater the tendency to tarnish thegood reputation of DLSU.But if the Admin will keep issuesconfidential, negative speculation would arise, causing more gaps to open. As a concrete example, I learned thatmany CCS faculty were worried beforeabout the possible merging of CCSand COE. Those with probationary status fear they might be removed intheir respective departments, becausemerging would involve reducingmanpower as a way to limit spending.Because there were no clear andofficial statements, rumors continuedto spread, causing more fears. But ittook the Admin more months to ironthe issues, which most faculty viewed asdelayed clarification of the matter.In reality, transparency is demandedof this University. By transparency,I mean the immediate clarificationof hot pressing issues, the constantcommunication between the higheradministration and departments, theeasy access to University records,particularly the breakdown of DLSUfinances, and other significant mattersthat require clarification.* * *Behind the Admin’s staunchprotection of DLSU image, there isalso a tendency that image-drivenprograms encroach the welfare andrights of students. A classic example is the modularprogram being implemented amongthe accounting students. Throughthe years, our BSA program has beenconsidered as one of the best programsin the country, because our accountinggraduates exhibit consistent highpassing rates during the CPA BoardExams. The modular program is gearedtowards making the Accountancy course an honors program, which againadds prestige to the school image.During its one-year implementation, Accountancy students encountered a lotof difficulties in the modular program. A friend of mine in the programcommented that “the constant changeof policy is unhealthy for the students.If you view it in all angles, it appearsthat we, the students are victims. Thisconstant change creates confusionand unjust treatment.” Althoughthe program has been successful inheightening the image of University,the execution of the program hasaffected a number of students. With the hype of attaining the world-class status, the Admin alwaysaccelerate new programs to the point of executing them without proper testing,thus infringing the students’ welfare.This is more alarming. In theMay 2005 issue of Mobile Philippines(mph) magazine, ITC-ComputerFacilities and Operations (CFO) HeadErwin Jurilla made an off-puttingremark on the behavior of studentsregarding the usage of IT services.The department head was indirectly quoted, “The environment in (De) LaSalle is different indeed. Students availof IT services everyday. As users, they are unpredictable and some even poseas threats to the network security. Butthe [ITC] staff always gives the bestof themselves to serve the academiccommunity better.”There maybe truth in the statementof Jurilla, but his revelation imposes agreater danger. Has the CFO headconsidered the ramifications of hisstatement? Outsiders then may view Lasallian students as threats to systems when they are already employed in any IT company, because this is the way they were evaluated in the University.Jurilla underlined the good imageof ITC service in a self-congratulatory  way, but he has disdained the integrity of Lasallians. Students and not theimage-driven programs are the realcontributors to the school image. Whenever our students win in any prestigious competitions, the name of the University is glorified. In anotherangle, administrators seem bolder inexpressing hot issues to national mediarather than to campus journalists.I understand why the Adminhas to select what it divulges. Br. Armin stated in our headline articlethat “other people” might abuse theinformation. But is the selectivity forthe good of the University as a wholeor the “superficial” school imageonly? We'll only know in the long run when it improves or breaks down theUniversity status.
The pen awaits.Annual Recruitment Week.June 6 to 10. Central Plaza.
 A blindfold is anything that is tied over the eyes in order to block thesight. In the context of DLSU, however, series of blindfolds figuratively represent major setbacks that obstruct students from the essentialUniversity matters. These blindfolds range from the Administration’sawkward (if not blank) response regarding University issues to theStudent Council’s lame approach in combating policies that hamperstudent rights.DLSU System President Br. Armin Luistro, FSC, is planning to getrid of one of the blindfolds by allowing some access to University files.Through a system-wide database, vital information for the eight DLSUunits is expected to be collated, stored, analyzed, and retrieved. Suchinformation should help decision-makers make the right decisions. Thisis from the System’s perspective.Now, can this plan be pursued in DLSU-Manila, a University  where accessing of student-related records is no walk in the park? Infact, campus journalists and student leaders find it difficult to accessfinancial statements, discipline records, and other pertinent files inthe University. Most DLSU offices refuse to share these records withstudents, justifying its confidential nature. The records, however, areconsidered as public documents, since they quantify and evaluate studentconcerns. It is possible that working under a shroud of secrecy permitsthe Administration to infringe on student rights. If this is not the case,then why not be transparent?Transparency is accountability. The more the students see what goeson in a University, the more the Admin will become more accountable. Although the Admin can claim that transparency is already given in theUniversity, the Lasallian community must feel it with sincerity. Removingthis blindfold will definitely result to transparency.Student representatives should be aware that transparency will alsoincrease expectations on them. They must further assert themselves as afactor in decision-making by arguing accordingly to student perspective.Most importantly, they must take out their blindfolds during deliberations,so that they can see and foresee the possible implications of University policies and answer according with vigilant yet logical reasoning.There is a glimmer of hope for the student body. This schoolyear,one of the SC’s goals is to strengthen the representation of students indeliberating University concerns. The council is lobbying for studentrepresentation in the Board of Trustees, the highest policy making body in DLSU and the Enforcement Section of the Discipline Office. As the school year begins, let us remove the blindfolds that continueto encroach student rights—blindfolds that result to miscommunicationand passivity. The political atmosphere may be more tensioned, but this would lead to clarification of issues and better service to the Lasalliancommunity.
Remove the blindfold
S
o, how have the first weeks of school been? Are you enjoying your the term so far, or are you stillhaving that summer hangover? Ipresume that a lot of people are havingtheir own summer hangover sinceschool started very early (May 23 wasthe earliest first day class since 2002,as far as I can remember). Anyway, here’s one thing for sure:a lot of people had their first day funk. I’m not referring to the latestRexona jingle, but to the funk (a stateof depression, as defined by Merriam- Webster’s) that most people got whenthey had to adjust during their first day.I feel sorry for all those people that hadto go to school very early and those who had to fall in line for the rest of the day just to get their subjects. Whenever I think of enrollmentand adjustment, whether it be online ormanual, I pity those people who haveonly one failing subject. I pity thembecause they are always the deprivedones during online enrollment andthey carry the “bad luck” up to theadjustment period. I pity them becausethey forever labeled by the registrar asthe “regular” enrollees, students whoget the fewest choice of the subjects, which usually becomes as a cause of delay, especially if the subject they  want to get only comes out onceevery school year. And if adjustmentcomes, they simply scavenge on what’sleft for them. As a suggestion, asidefrom opening more subjects, I think that changing the status of students with failing subjects from regular topriority enrollees, if the student did notfail any subject for the previous term, would help these students choose moresubjects and timeslots.* * *I don’t see the point on why someSC officers need to assert that they came from Tapat or Santugon. I think that these officers should understandthat they are already serving thestudent body. They should havein mind that the students are theirprimary concern and not the image of their political party. President ManuelQuezon said, “My loyalty to my party ends when my loyalty to my country begins.”Sometimes it amazes me when Ithink that the two existing parties inDLSU instinctively think contrastingly.I mean if Tapat thinks and decides forthe color black, then Santugon mustthink and decide for the contrastingcolor that is white or vice-versa. Ihave nothing against contrasting viewsand opposition. In fact, I believe thatdifferent views help make better ideas.However, what if the issue at hand is of common concern, like the welfare of the students? Will the two parties stillthink and act differently?* * *During the past terms, I noticedthat almost all computers in somecomputer labs have USB ports butnot all of them were functional – astudent couldn’t personally use theUSB port. Students must request fromthe computer technician to transfera file larger than a diskette’s capacity from the student’s computer to thetechnician’s computer where the USBport is working. My curiosity led meto think that the reason of disablingthe USB drives was to prevent thestudents from downloading largefiles (like a small program) from theInternet, thereby clogging the campusbandwidth.I think that students are awareof this fact. If a student wanted todownload a large file, it would be morelogical for the student to download itduring the night since fewer peopleuse the Internet on that period. Inaddition, USB flash disks are replacingthe floppy diskettes, so it would bebetter if our world-class school allowsthe student to use the flash drives incomputer labs.Thus, it was a good thing whenstudents were finally allowed to useUSB drives in computer labs. I think the ITC finally realized that USB diskshave become a necessity for students.On other computer-related issues, just before the last school year ended,the ITC started to require the Lasalliancommunity, both students and schoolpersonnel, to use their MyLaSalleaccounts before they surf the net. Thisnew rule, as my co-editor has said onhis column, has limited student activity on the net. And now, just a week afterschool started, the ITC is requiring thestudents to log on to each computerbefore they use it. I believe that theITC is only securing the use of thecomputer, but can they also monitorour private activities, like e-mailing andlogging on to our blogs or Friendster,much like what CCTV cameras cando during our free time around thecampus?
 
10 June 2005410 June 20055
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