FROM heel to hero.
This describes the change in the public’s perception of UST which was cast as a spoilsport when it demanded a retake of the fraud-marred 2006 Nursing board exam whose first anniversary was marked this June.
Critics called UST arrogant, arguing UST wanted a retake since it registered a “mere” 83 per cent in the exam, compared with its previous averages of 90 per cent above.
But UST was vindicated when the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS) said passers of the exams should retake it or else they could not get a permit from the California-based agency to work in the US.
After much hedging, the government ordered a retake of two tests where the leaks allegedly occurred.
College of Nursing associate professor Inocencia Tionko said that the issue was honesty and truth. She added there should be no condoning of cheating.
SIDE-TRACKING calls on Pope Benedict XVI to decline the invitation of President Macapagal-Arroyo for him to visit the country, UST Rector Ernesto Arceo, O.P., said the Pope should come to the Philippines.
In an interview with the Varsitarian last June 19, Arceo said that whatever the country’s political situation, the visit by the Pope would still be good for the Filipinos because it would “rekindle their faith” and might even inspire politicians to do their job morally.
IS THE dispute surrounding the spinoff of the UST Hospital into a separate corporation and the construction of a 17-story hospital tower finally coming to an end?
US-based Medicine alumni have come out in support of the hospital’s bid to emerge out of financial ruin, answering various allegations fed by the opponents of the expansion project to a few newspaper columnists.
In a statement published in the Philippine Star last June 15, Stella Evangelista, director of the UST Medical Alumni Association of America, defended UST’s decision to create a separate corporation out of the hospital. The P3-billion hospital tower expansion will push through, she clarified.
Contrary to allegations by Star columnist Federico D. Pascual in Postcript last June 3 and BusinessMirror columnist Lito Gagni in Market Files last March, Evangelista said Dominican priests on the hospital board did not use their personal money to put up the corporation.
UST is experiencing a dramatic increase in enrolment despite the overall slump of private education in the Philippines, in a development seen by University officials as a sign of increased public confidence in the quality of education offered by the oldest university in Asia.
Data released by the University Admissions Office showed that 12,000 freshmen were accepted this school year from more than 40,000 applicants nationwide, about two-thirds more than 7,302 freshmen enrollees last academic year.
UST Rector Fr. Ernesto Arceo O.P., in his message to the Thomasian community at the school opening Mass last June 12, said that all other schools in the University Belt Consortium—except the University of the East (UE)—experienced a decrease in enrollees.
“It takes only the correct vision to see how blessed we are,” Arceo said following the Mass of the Holy Spirit which marked the opening of academic year 2007-2008.
ON THE brink of glory.
Flaunting a little of everything in its retooled artillery, the Faculty of Arts and Letters (Artlets) is slowly making its championship intentions clear in the 2007 Thomasian Goodwill Games basketball wars.
The AB team capped the month-long eliminations with a flawless 7-0 slate, following a 96-78 drubbing of the Ecclesiastical Faculties last December 13 at the Engineering Sports Complex.
Banking on the prolific three-point sniping of shooting guard Ed De la Torre, Artlets underscored its reputation as the fiercest offensive machineries in the tournament, whipping their opponents by an average margin of 19 points an outing.
“We are excited going to the finals, the competition is much more intense compared to previous games,” Artlet guard Rainier Santos told the Varsitarian.
FOR THE first time, painting majors of the College of Fine Arts and Design experienced how it was to showcase and sell their works in an open-house exhibition at the gallery of the Beato Angelico Building last Nov. 19 to 23.
“(The professors wanted) the students to feel how is it like to sell an artwork,” said Mailah Baldemore-Balde, painting professor and one of the organizers of exhibition, titled Mga Pyesa: 1 2 3 4. “We want them to be appreciated when someone buys their painting. This is like a steppingstone where we make them feel the life of an artist in the world outside.”
The works, which covered different artistic styles such as modernism, impressionism, expressionism, cubism, surrealism and realism, were plates required of the students.
However, Balde said she did not want the students to consider their works as mere plates.
BAMBAN, Tarlac – The aeta culture may be slowly fading away, but tribesmen remain optimistic on the future.
During the “Araw ng Katutubo” spearheaded by the UST Office for Community Development of last October 25, Fernando Mallari, 50, leader of Sitio Haduan, told the Varsitarian that many in the younger generations of their village no longer want to practice traditions inherited from their ancestors. “Dahil sa impluwensiya mula sa kapatagan, nahahati kami,” Mallari said.
One of the reasons for this is that younger aetas want to imitate the way the “unats” (straight-haired) wear clothes, especially those they see on TV.
Despite this, he still sees hope for their culture and traditions. Elders are starting to take measures to preserve their way of life, like greater use of the ethnic dialects, Mag-antsi and Sambal, in conversing with each other.
FOR BEING nowhere during that one week in November dedicated to promoting students’ rights, leaders of student organizations got a mouthful from no less than the “ARSA” or Assistant to the Rector for Student Affairs herself, Cristina Castro-Cabral.
At the twice-a-year dialogue called the “ARSA’s Hour,” Cabral used a 90-minute speech to take student leaders to task for the poor turnout during the much-hyped Student’s Rights and Welfare Week or STRAW, where only eight out of more than 170 accredited University-wide and college-based student organizations were represented.
Cabral also warned student organizations who have been conducting activities without approval, and even threatened to evict those who have not been taking care of their erstwhile spanking-new offices at the Tan Yan Kee Student Center.
ATTENDANCE and punctuality are now “technological” musts at the College of Architecture.
To better monitor the daily time record of professors, the college has bought a state-of-the-art device called the biometric bundy system.
Professors now have to have their fingers scanned by the machine, which has a fingerprint database, to record their attendance.
“Before this system was (introduced), the attendance of the faculty members was checked by a staff that would go around the building and check each classroom,” Architecture Dean John Joseph Fernandez said. “And because (Beato Angelico) is an eight-storey building, by the time (the staffer reaches a classroom), half of the period has already passed. So you wouldn’t know who came in late and if the classes are already dismissed.”