THE “MILLENNIAL” Rector, Fr. Tamelane Lana, O.P., aspires to “lay down clearly and firmly the groundwork” for the transformation of the University in the new century.

“I have not been dubbed as millennial rector of the University for nothing,” Lana said in the 2004-2005 Rector’s Report last Aug. 5 at the Medicine Auditorium. “I wish to be remembered with this title because I was the rector who paved the way towards building up a new image for UST at the onset of this great millennium.”

Lana, in his final report as UST rector, assessed the performance of the University in the previous year, using the long-term goals of Vision 2011 as a checklist.

According to Lana, UST worked hard to meet its targets for school year 2004-2005.

The University has achieved its educational standards through newly accredited programs in the previous school year, Lana said.

The Faculty of Pharmacy achieved a Level III status, while the programs of the Faculty of Engineering and the College of Education (Education) attained Level II accreditation. The College of Commerce and the Tourism program of Education, meanwhile, have acquired Level I accreditation.

Meanwhile, Graduate School programs such as Teacher Education and Business Education were accorded a “superior” rating by the Commission on Higher Education.

Aside from retaining its centers of excellence and centers of development, the University has maintained its notable performance in the board exams.

The Professional Regulatory Commission declared the University as first among the top performing private schools in 10 or more licensure examinations, the Rector said.

Faculty

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According to Lana, the improvement of the academic profile of the faculty remains a “crucial challenge.” The Rector has been rallying for the cause since he assumed office. But the faculty profile has improved only slightly.

The percentage of the faculty staff with master’s degrees slightly grew from 49 to 50 per cent, while the doctorate degree holders increased from nine per cent to 12 per cent.

Lana congratulated the research centers of the University for surpassing the Key Performance Indicators of the Operational Plan for 2004-2005, with the UST Research Center conducting a total of 202 funded research projects.

Lana also declared that UST has strengthened its information dissemination system through SMS “texting brigades”, mass media connections, the electronic billboard, and more bulletin boards on campus. The University also improved in its public presence through the USTV Student’s Choice Awards and journal exchanges.

Computerization

The Santo Tomas e-Service Providers (Steps) and the Education Technology Center (Ed-Tech) have enhanced computerization in administration system and instruction, through the e-Learning System and the Thomasian e-Learning (Thomel) System, Lana said.

“The two-year upgrade in the computerization of the University’s teaching and learning methods, including the University administrative processes, provided a significant support to the University‘s application to the Philippine Quality Award,” Lana said.

Last year, the percentage of web-enhanced courses increased from 20 per cent to 79 per cent. Consequently, the percentage of Blackboard users ballooned from 17 per cent to 77 per cent.

Lana said Steps will initiate the rewiring of the University in order to make Internet access available to every multimedia classroom before 2011.

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Infrastructure

Aside from computerization, the University has major infrastructure projects for 2011: the Student Center Bldg., the Alfredo Velayo College of Accountancy Bldg., the Alumni Walk and a state-of-the-art Gymnasium that can accommodate 5,000 people.

But Lana admitted that the projects would entail a lot of expenses.

Last year the University incurred an excess income of P18 million, which was higher than the P2 million surplus it earned in school-year 2003-2004.

Lana said 72 per cent of the University income will go to infrastructure. Marlene H. Elmenzo

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