December 29, 2015, 12:28a.m. – THE COMMISSION on Higher Education (Ched) has named six more UST programs as “centers of excellence” and three others as “centers of development,” expanding the University’s roster of academic offerings that bear the government’s quality seal.

Hotel and Restaurant Management, Travel Management, Medical Technology and Pharmacy obtained the coveted center of excellence (COE) tag while Chemical Engineering and Psychology were upgraded to COE from the center of development (COD) status.

Biology, Chemistry, Medicine, Nursing and Philosophy retained their COE designations, based on Ched Memorandum Order No. 38 Series of 2015, signed by Ched Chairwoman Patricia Licuanan last Dec. 23. The designations in the latest Ched order are valid from Jan. 1, 2016 to Dec. 31, 2018.

UST’s Music and Teacher Education programs also have COE status, and their designations were extended until March 31, 2016 to allow Ched to complete the evaluation of COE and COD applicants.

Meanwhile, Ched declared as new CODs UST’s Communication Arts, Information Technology and Library and Information Science Programs. Physical Therapy, Literature, and Journalism retained the COD status.

Ched has also extended the COD designations of UST’s civil, electronics, electrical, industrial and mechanical engineering programs until March 31, 2016.

As a result of Ched’s latest order, UST now has 13 COEs and 11 CODs. The University also has the distinction of being the only COE in Pharmacy, and of having the sole COD designations in Physical Therapy and Journalism.

“COEs and CODs may avail [themselves of] financial assistance on a project proposal basis geared towards the development or improvement of the programs, particularly cutting-edge technology in the different disciplines,” Licuanan said in her memorandum order.

In a June 2013 interview, Licuanan said COEs were “expected to be centers of graduate education,” and “to help other schools who are in the same region.”

According to the Ched website, programs with COE and COD designations may also be given priority in the selection of institutional partners in Ched development projects, graduate scholarships for faculty members, and research subsidies.

Selected programs in other universities such as the University of the Philippines, Ateneo de Manila, De La Salle University, and University of San Carlos were also named COEs and CODs. R.A. D.R. Narra


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