THE UNIVERSITY remains the biggest producer of licensed professionals in the country, with a total 15,863 Thomasians hurdling board examinations out of 18,835 examinees in the past five years, or an overall passing rate of 84.22 percent. UST also produced 296 board exam topnotchers from 2009 to 2013.

Science courses led by the Nursing program recorded the highest passing rates, results of a study by the Varsitarian, using data from the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC), showed.

From 2009 to 2013, Nursing was the University’s top-performing program based on licensure exam results, with a total of 2,250 successful examinees out of 2,264, or an overall passing rate of 99.17 percent.

Nursing produced the most topnotchers at 78, one of whom bagged the top spot in 2012. Three Thomasian examinees landed on second place—two in 2011 and one in 2013.

In an interview, College of Nursing Dean Susan Maravilla attributed the success of the college to the faculty, 80 percent of whom are doctorate degree holders.

She added: “We continue to build partnerships with more hospitals for affiliation. We continue to maintain high standards by maintaining the cut-off scores of our students in first year and second year.”

Medicine, often regarded as the University’s flagship program, trailed behind Nursing with an overall passing rate of 98.85 percent, or 1,876 new doctors out of 1,892 examinees. It had 28 topnotchers in the past five years, slightly higher than that of the University of Philippines-Manila, which had 25.

UST consistently made it to the roster of top-performing schools in the physician board exams during the five-year period.

The University’s performance was unprecedented in 2009, after six Thomasians entered the top 10 list of passers. Three of them took the top three spots, including Melissa Paulita Mariano at first place.

The University recorded a back-to-back No. 1 feat in 2010, after Chitra Punjabi took the top spot and led four other Thomasians in the top 10. Chico Pangan grabbed first place in the off-season board exams of February 2013.

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Faculty of Medicine and Surgery Dean Jesus Valencia said Medicine strove to be consistent with its programs and systems to maintain its performance. Valencia also credited faculty members as well as the medical curriculum, which he said conformed to global standards.

Education, Nutrition

Elementary Education, declared a Center of Excellence by the Commission on Higher Education, posted an overall passing rate of 95.37 percent, or 415 successful examinees out of 482, for the period 2009 to 2013. It produced one topnotcher, who took the second spot in 2011.

Nutrition recorded an overall passing rate of 92.79 percent, or 373 out of 402 examinees. It produced 10 topnotchers, two of whom were first placers. Thomasians Paolo Suarez and Hannah Paulyn Co topped their batches in 2009 and 2012, respectively.

Medical Technology recorded a 92.36-percent overall passing rate, or 1,268 passers out of 1,351 takers, and produced 17 topnotchers.

Frieda Hapan, department chair of Medical Technology at the Faculty of Pharmacy, said the goal was to become the top-performing school in the country.

“We don’t just want to have topnotchers, we want all of our graduates to pass the licensure examination, which is why this year, we are reviving our Medical Technology in-house review program,” she added.

Physical Therapy posted an overall passing rate of 91.11 percent or 369 out of 405 examinees, and produced 19 topnotchers. Physical Therapy, a CHEd Center of Development, was the most successful in producing first placers.

Phoebe Dawn Evangelista and Jerome Delfin Paguyo shared the No. 1 spot in the August 2013 board exams. Three other Thomasians made it to the top spot, one each in 2009, 2010, and February 2013.

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Meanwhile, Secondary Education recorded an overall passing rate of 85.61 percent, equivalent to 743 passers out of 857 takers. It produced seven topnotchers.

First in CPA history

Accountancy, a consistent top performer, registered an overall passing rate of 85.75 percent, with 1,595 certified public accountants out of 1,765 examinees and 22 topnotchers for the period 2009 to 2013.

Celaica Vibar and Bren Cruz shared the first place in October 2012, a first in the history of the CPA licensure examinations.

Civil Engineering recorded an overall rate of 85.21 percent or 549 passers out of 635 takers, and produced 13 topnotchers. It was only in 2012 when UST had no topnotcher in civil engineering. Late last year, UST bounced back in the civil engineering board exams after three Thomasians made it to the top 10. Paul Marion Demapelis, former team captain of Engineering’s Pautakan team, placed first.

Pharmacy registered an 80.47-percent overall passing rate or 1,520 passers out of 1,889 examinees, and produced 27 topnotchers. Two of them took first place, three got the second spot, and two landed on third place. Cheryl Lyn Tan placed first in 2009 while Clinical Pharmacy graduate Heidi Rose Tanjueco topped the 2012 exams.

Guidance Counseling recorded an overall passing rate of 75.83 percent or a total of 23 passers out of 29 takers. There were five UST topnotchers during the five-year period.

Mechanical Engineering, Architecture

Also based on five-year PRC data, Mechanical Engineering posted a 77.73-percent overall passing rate or 348 passers out of 440 takers. It had only one graduate in the top 10.

Architecture posted a modest overall passing rate of 75.15 percent, or 1,503 passers out of 2,010 takers. It had 24 topnotchers, four of whom landed on first place.

Occupational Therapy registered an overall passing rate of 67.95 percent or 176 passers out of 259 takers, and produced four topnotchers.

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“We are doing a lot to help our Occupational Therapy graduates excel in the board exams. Right now, we are having our in-house review to get higher passing rates,” Rehabilitation Sciences Secretary Donald Manlapaz said.

Chemical Engineering recorded an overall passing rate of 63.77 percent, producing a total of 382 licensed engineers out of 599 examinees. Two graduates were topnotchers in 2012, while one took the ninth spot in April 2009.

Electrical Engineering recorded an overall passing rate of 63.7 percent, equivalent to 279 successful examinees out of 438. Chemistry recorded a 62.96-percent passing rate, or 153 out of 243 examinees.

No. 1 despite low passing rate

Interior Design had an overall passing rate of only 61.69 percent, equivalent to 256 passers out of 415, but produced 27 topnotchers. UST produced nine topnotchers in 2012.

Librarians settled with a 58.02-percent overall passing rate, or 94 passers out of 162, with three topnotchers in the past five years.

Electronics Engineering posted the lowest passing rates and had an overall rating of only 56.67 percent. UST produced total of 463 licensed electronics engineers out of 817 examinees from 2009 to 2013.

Engineering Dean Philipina Marcelo told the Varsitarian that the passing rate was not the only indicator of the quality of the graduates.

“You cannot measure the five-year learning of the students here based on a three-day examination. Tingnan mo `yung kabuuang performance nila sa maraming areas,” she said.

It was in November 2011 when UST registered the lowest passing rate in any board exam, when only 14 Thomasians passed the Electronics Engineering boards out of 126 examinees. The passing rate was a dismal 11.11 percent.

UST redeemed itself in the December 2013 licensure exams for electronics engineers, producing three topnotchers including Kevin Tolentino who took the second place. A.F. Merez and J.P. Villanueva


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