Saturday, July 30, 2005

Sister Imelda Mora Imparts LCCM Vision at Students’ “Red-letter Day”

Sister Imelda Mora, OSA gave a warm welcome to the Class 2009 at the Students’ Assembly for Freshmen and Transferees June 22, 2005. “We are a community, and the concept of community directs our activities”, Sister Imelda addressed the 3000 students. LCCM tries to preserve the congeniality and concern of students for each other. The students’ orientation is described as a red-letter day because it is a pivotal point for the academic life of students. "This is the beginning of your lives as adults. Graduation from highschool marks the end of your youth."

The orientation being the first day of adulthood, this rite of passage signals the beginning of a profound influence of the LCCM on the lives of the students. It is a milestone. Augustinian values are represented in the LCCM logo—with the burning heart as the symbol of love that St. Augustine and Augustinians have for God, characterized by virtues of unity, charity and truth, the book/ scripture that represents St. Augustine’s source of conversion, the arrow piercing the heart which is a symbol of his conversion (his heart pierced by God’s love), and the staff which is the symbol of St. Augustine as bishop of Hippo, North Africa. The President hopes that the students will be part of the institution’s agenda of promoting an Augustinian ideal of a community context in which learning can occur. This consists of the school’s partnership between students, teachers, staff, and parents—a community that reaches out. The Sister President highlights Education in an Augustinian tradition concerned with building a firm foundation of knowledge for personal and spiritual life as well as a basis for professional or work life.

“Real education is characterized by a searching for knowledge and understanding that is integrated with personal experience.” The institution values the preservation of Filipino culture and heritage while accommodating the latest innovations, particularly in Information Technology. Students will henceforth undergo a process of preparation to be equipped with a vision to make a significant contribution to society. ■

Academic Affairs: New Face, New Phase

The recently appointed VP for Academic Affairs is Dr. Lina Diaz De Rivera. “La Consolacion is a very pleasant surprise. People are very warm. The community is very dynamic. I see an extremely high morale of students and personnel.”


The Office of Academic Affairs can expect some changes at its transitory state. The new VP humbly shares her plans within her term, “As a so-called Reading Education Expert, Sister Imee expects me to organize a Reading Center where the faculty can learn new things in Reading Education, such as theories about reading narratives, success or failure in reading, methodology and some research suggestions on reading.” Highly qualified for her post, Dr. De Rivera has a wealth of experience in the academe.


Aside from a PhD in English from the College of Arts and Letters in the University of the Philippines, Dr. Lina Diaz de Rivera has a Diploma in Applied Linguistics from the Regional Language Center in Singapore. She has been a Fullbright Senior Research Lecturing Scholar at the University of Texas in San Antonio from 2002-2003. She was also active as an international lecturer, as she has been invited in Edinburgh, Scotland, Singapore, and in the United States-- in Vermont, Connecticut, Texas as well as New Orleans. She is also a National lecturer in literature and reading education. She has been a resource person in DepEd sponsored training programs in the national level. She has been a Director of the Children’s Literature Festival at the IRA 20th World Congress. In the 1990’s, she was active in organizing projects as President of the Reading Association of the Philippines, where she conceptualized and implemented the “RAP on wheels outreach program”. She is also a member of the Delaware-based International Reading Association, the New York-based Society of Writers and Illustrators for Children, and the National Geographic Society.


Dr. Lina Diaz de Rivera was a Full Professor in Reading Education at the University of the Philippines as well as the Chair of the Language Studies Program at the UP Open University (Los Banos Laguna) before she accepted her new post at LCCM. In UP Diliman, she spearheaded the institutionalization of the Doctoral Program in Reading Education—the only one of its kind in Southeast Asia. “As a teacher, I am always amazed at how a student can teach me a lot.” She also streamlined the Master’s Program in Reading Education.


Lina Diaz de Rivera has been an author of textbooks in Reading and English, and has edited the works of prominent authors such as Ambeth Ocampo (“Meaning and History and Bones of Contention”) and Pacita Jacinto (“Living with the Enemy”). Dr. Diaz de Rivera is a 1996 Carlos Palanca Memorial Awardee in Literature for her short story entitled “The Gem”. She is an expert in Children’s Literature and one of her research interests is theorizing the writing of narratives for children. She was recently commissioned by the LGM Corporation for the “Golden Salakot” Series, to train writers for Children’s Literature. Dr. Diaz De Rivera would be at the formal launch on July 19 at the Cultural Center of the Philippines, where two of her works will be launched.


An active Catholic, she has also shared her expertise as an editor at the Parish Bulletin of Our Lady of the Abandoned in Sta. Ana, as well as a writer in various church publications. “The church always calls me back.” The VPAA shares that it was the church that tapped her into teaching. She first taught cathecism during her pre-teens. Her philosophy in education is strongly aligned with an Augustinian education. “The Catholic church emphasizes the uniqueness of the human person. I share the institution’s reverence for Filipino culture and Heritage.” ■

LCCM In the Process of a Mountain Climb

LCCM President Sister Imelda Mora gave an encouraging message at the Institutional Assembly last June 6 at the Adelaide Function Room. “LCCM is in the process of a mountain climb. We’re not starting one. We’re not at the bottom of the hill ready to take our first step. We have started. And let me tell you, the view right now is great. The state of our school today is very good and we can make it excellent. “


The president encouraged personnel to keep on moving forward. “If there’s one thing about our future I’m sure of, it’s that there will always be change. It is the one constant. And that’s why we are preparing for our next stage of climbing.” The president then gave a summary of developments during the academic year 2004-2005.


There were innovations in Instructional Program for the School of Arts and Sciences, such as the increasing incidence of computer aided instruction, less paper work on the part of the teacher, and enhanced computer proficiency among faculty and students. Moreover, General Education modules will be finished before the semester ends. BS Psychology, which is a pre-med course, was granted full recognition by CHED. Consequently, a research laboratory was established to cater to their needs.


The School of HRM and Tourism has been winning several competitions on national levels. It saw the immediate employment of graduates in several institutions such as the Manila Pavilion, Las Palmas Hotel, and Power Training Institute. The school has adopted an industry-based instruction. It also uses the software on IFCA-Information for Competitive Advantage.

The School of Nursing has clustered various disciplines to achieve specialization in both curriculum and faculty development. The Nursing Review Center will soon be launched. LCCM uses an on-line review built in Nursing curriculum through ATTI Assessment Technologies Institute International. The school has affiliations with the Quezon City Health Department, Manila Health Department, Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center, Philippine Children’s Medical Center, Philippine Heart Center, National Kidney and Transplant Institute, Veterans’ Memorial Medical Center, Cardinal Santos Medical Center, San Lorenzo Hospital, Philippine Orthopedic Center, National Center for Mental Health, and the Lung Center of the Philippines.


From BED, the Math and Science Curriculum has been enriched, with add-on subjects offered to the High school Science section, such as Consumer Math, Environmental Science. The students have won in DOST-sponsored competitions on investigatory projects. Even at the grade school level, students are already encouraged, upon the supervision of teachers, to make assignments and Internet researches.


Campus facilities have been upgraded. The college now has a new outdoor swimming pool where students can be trained from kinder to college. LCCM aims to produce students who will be active in the Olympics. Incidentally, the college is proud to be one of the few institutions to have Water Polo introduced in the curriculum.

On the other hand, the newly renovated Food Court and recently roofed Evening Restaurant at the South Wing of La Residencia I can better serve the needs of the students. La Residencia II, which will house the gymnasium is in the process of completion. Nursing facilities are also being upgraded to be able to cater to the needs of the campus’ growing Nursing community—comprising one of the biggest populations in LCCM.


LCCM will not lose its momentum. Future challenges include the fortification of the formation program of personnel and student leaders. There is also the need to invest more support for faculty and staff for research and courseware development. There are also plans to implement new programs that are responsive to market needs, such as a Business Communication School for Asians. There is also the need to enhance student services programs in Guidance and Student Leadership. There is also a growing need to activate the Performing Arts through the Mass Communications and Literature Department and the Office of Student Affairs. There is also the need to computerize the Finance Department.


Sister Imelda encouraged the personnel to “push forward, climbing to position ourselves as an excellent school, rather than to stand still and face the impact of stagnant and declining resources.” LCCM strives to be a cutting edge institution in the 21st century. “We want the implementation to be a collective effort that works for everyone. To keep this momentum, all of us must be innovative leaders in our individual fields, no matter what our position on campus is.”

Enhancing Our E-Learning Environment

Yapster Representatives Michael Dorado, Oliger Tarroza, and Miguel Balthazar facilitated a workshop for LCCM teachers last June 8, 2005 at the Gregor Mendel Science Center. The workshop was attended by the academic communities of La Consolacion College Mendiola, Deparro, and Binan. “We are now on our third year of Yapster implementation. We’ve been doing this for the past two years”, explains Dean Christy Gonzaga. Indeed, Yapster has just renewed its Memorandum of agreement with LCCM.

In retrospect, Sister Imelda Mora and former VP for Academic Affairs Dr. Ronald Pastrana had a vision of making La Consolacion College Manila an Electronic Learning Center. Through the expertise of our IT specialists, an E-learning system has been implemented under the leadership of Dean Christy Gonzaga. As a realization of a simple vision that started three years ago, the LCCM teachers have collaborated with IT specialists in developing learning modules that students can access. Yapster has been a partner in making this dream possible. Yapster is a company that provides e-Learning solutions to various Philippine corporations, government institutions, colleges and universities. Through a moodle system, Yapster offers numerous possibilities for upgrading our learning environment.

Teachers can now look at transcripts in any workstation as long as a connection with the EKP server is established. Today, record-keeping can be more efficient and reliable. It is also possible to launch a particular course (auto-enroll) on-line. The internal e-mail also enables effective communication between teacher to student, student to teacher, and teacher to teacher. Moreover, generating reports are made easy. Yapster has also enabled features that are able to channel announcements, and news. It also has an internal email, records/transcript results of the on-line exam for each assigned class, and a personal notebook.

Ms. Precy Katigbak emphasizes the importance of “moodles” through the LMS (Learning Management System) “in place of the manila paper” to encourage a student-centered learning environment. Visual learning techniques, thinking tools, and learning activities that bear a connection with real life will encourage students to be more imaginative. She also explains the possibility of students --regardless of year level or age-- using rubric assessment on-line, so that they will learn to evaluate themselves at an early age.

The possibilities are limitless. All the faculty has to do as the content provider is submit the learning materials to the instructional designer. A module is similar to an abridged textbook with hyperlinks to new updates and research outputs to the related object of inquiry. Teachers are given the academic freedom to use hyperlinks for references. Thus, the virtual academy of LCCM has the potential to become a behemoth in hyperspace. However, as issues were raised regarding the ethics and regulation of Internet usage, Dean Gonzaga asserts, “We have to set up general policies that we will all agree upon. We don’t want to curtail the creativity of teachers.”

At the end of the workshop, several of our faculty presented the modules they developed. Ms. Precy Katigbak presented her module that uses a Flash Macromedia presentation with voice over. She shares that an interactive module such as that designed by Engineer Paul Reyes of the IT Center may help motivate the students. Indeed, Christology classes can now be presented in a very engaging manner. Mr. Ramiro Advincula, one of the module developers presented Father Louie Angeles’ module on Christology. The possibility of using a video presentation to provide alternative ways of learning was introduced. A module may contain the introduction, course description, and vision mission of the course. Father Louie’s module also contains discussion groups to make the learning process more interactive. Similar to Microsoft Encarta, teachers can use interactive maps, where students can click the dots to look at the text, each with a brief narrative on Jesus’ life while listening to the voice over.

Other features include crossword puzzles used for memory enhancement, on-line preliminary exams that automatically display the score, forums where assignments can be submitted. On the other hand, Mr. Venancio Santos has meticulously designed an on-line module for Mathematics. Its features include an on-line diagnostic test. Included in its functions is an item analysis where the time and date taken is recorded. The Item Response Analysis can allow teachers to know whether a certain question is really difficult to understand. Thus, it is now possible for teachers to evaluate the way they design their questionnaires.

The challenge now is for teachers to be at the forefront of E-learning without diluting the quality of education. The faculty of LCCM realizes the need to provide an interactive learning environment without compromising content.

Christy Gonzaga Presents E-Learning Implementation at Brunei ASAIHL Seminar

Dean Christy Gonzaga was one of the 60 paper presentors at the 2005 Association of Southeast Asian Institute of Higher Learning (ASAIHL) Seminar on “Applications of Computing and Information Technology in Higher Learning” held from June 27-30. The event coincided with the celebration of Universiti Brunei Darussalam’s Science and Technology Week.


As the Executive Director of the Center for Technology and Curriculum Development (CTCD), her presentation entitled “Reinventing Education Through E-learning: The La Consolacion College Manila Experience” amazed the participants who came from universities in Thailand, Malaysia, Hongkong, Japan, Kuwait, Sri Lanka, and Saudi Arabia among others.


Dean Gonzaga relates, “We were the only college that participated in the event.” Even Filipino delegates came from big universities. “I initially thought that I was an “outcast” but after my presentation, they were amazed at our E-Learning.” The participants’ first reaction after the presentation was to ask how much the tuition fee was. “They were shocked.” If the tuition fee was around 32 Brunei Dollars, they said ‘how could the students afford an e-learning environment?’ The participants were also wondering how 70-90 % of the population have an e-learning subject, compared to statistics in schools where e-learning is voluntary. “I told them that it was simple. All they have to do is to integrate e-learning in the syllabus.” The key to CTCD’s successful implementation of the e-learning program is the dynamic teamwork of the unit, excellent planning, and the application of principles of management in the implementation of LCCM’s virtual academy.

Among the Issues that were discussed were Visualization and Simulation through virtuality, On-line Educational Resources and Electronic Publishing, Institutional Administrations and Activities on E-Technology, and Case Studies on Virtual Environment. LCCM and the University of Santo Tomas were the only institutions that presented on e-learning.


At the ASAIHL, Dean Gonzaga also shared that once the techno-phobia of teachers was eliminated, the implementation of the use of e-learning modules in classrooms would be easy. She shares that the teachers who were initially resistant to changes in the system of instruction are now receptive towards the virtual environment. LCCM is the only institution that mandates the integration of e-learning in the curriculum.■

EMPOWERING THE FACULTY OF LA CONSOLACION COLLEGE

UST Professor Lectures on Innovative Teaching Strategies for New TeachersFresh Issue

Allan De Guzman gave a very interactive lecture on innovative teaching strategies at the second part of the Training Workshop for Teachers last June 2, 2005. To demonstrate that “creativity is the mother of teaching excellence”, this Associate Professor from the University of Santo Tomas shared some of the techniques used in classroom situations.

Dr. De Guzman is also the Director of the Center for Educational Research and Development in UST. To equip the new teachers, he shares the concept of Mathetics – the science and art of learning. “Prioritize the learning of students, not the teaching itself.” He demonstrated some teaching strategies that are very useful especially for BED faculty.

Dr. Allan De Guzman relates his odyssey, from being a Philippine Airlines Scholar to the moment when he backed out of the scholarship (that could have made him a pilot) and chose to become a teacher instead. He recalls that when his mother reprimanded him for giving up the privileges of being a pilot, he reasoned, “I may not be able to see the world, but I was able to make my students see the entire world”. Such is his passion for teaching that he has been a two time recipient of the Dangal ng UST Award for Most Outstanding Teaching, as a young instructor way back in 1996 and more recently, as an Assistant Professor (2000).

For Dr. De Guzman, “The Language of Passion is Excellence”. As a testament to this dictum, he was able to finish a Doctorate in Educational Management (1999) and a Post-doctorate training in Study Planning and Curriculum Development from the State of Israel barely six years after graduating with honors at the Royal Pontifical University of Santo Tomas. . In his eleven years of teaching experience, he has already been a consultant, resource person, and a trainer for various conferences for teachers—proof that his name is a byword in the teaching field. He has authored and co-authored studies on Educational Research, Educational Diagnosis, and Resource Management, in journals, and papers for national and international conferences.

PNU Professor Lectures on the Application of Multiple Intelligence Theory

“We have to help our students develop and find out their domain of intelligence.” Professor Marilyn Ubina Balagtas shared the applications of Multiple Intelligence Theory in her teaching and assessment practices at the first part of the recently held Training Workshop for Teachers last June 2, 2005. A proponent of the portfolio-based assessment, the professor shares that developing Intrapersonal Intelligence is at the heart of her assessment practice as an alternative to the pen and paper test. “I encourage my students to set goals for themselves and relate their classroom experience with their personal experience. Instead of bombarding them with requirements, I train them to be goal-oriented. I tell my students that the topics on the syllabus is only what I can offer them but they are free to suggest what else is needed.”

She also practices collaborative evaluation where the student takes part in rubric development. The student shares the responsibility of evaluating whether he or she was able to meet the standards. “It’s not just my rubric. It’s our rubric.” A rubric is not a mere list of criteria but a set of quantitative and qualitative descriptions of the criteria.


Professor Balagtas shares how she first realized how important it is to empower students. “During an evaluation, a student made me reflect on my practice because he was not given a chance to speak in class. I was young then. I wanted to show my mastery. I thought that the best teacher was the one who did everything and asked the students to deliver reports. When I was a student, I thought that teachers who asked students to give reports are the ones who did not want to teach because they were just seated at the back.” Now she has utilized assessment practices that encourage students to help motivate each other to exert effort.

Marilyn Balagtas is a PhD candidate at the University of the Philippines Diliman with a specialization in Research and Evaluation and has gone through an intensive training on Professional Education at Queensland, Australia. She has written several articles for Alitaptap, and textbooks in Science and Health, GMRC, and Mathematics for Elementary Pupils. She is active in conferences and workshops in the local and international arena.

Community Relations and Extension Services

Empowering the Underprivileged


The Office of Community Relations and Extension Services serves as a unit that fulfills the social responsibilities of an Augustinian institution. The office is designed to empower the underprivileged municipalities of Pantabangan, Nueva Ecija and selected urban areas. It also generates database information on the economic profile of communities, to serve as an assessment of their needs in order to implement community development programs. Under the leadership of newly appointed Director Edgardo Gonzaga, we can expect a fast tracking and intensification of programs such as reforestration, local and international networking, and the training of community beneficiaries. The Office is divided into two units—the NSTP and the Mo. Rita Barcelo Pastoral Foundation Center.


NSTP: A Revisit to Pantabangan


LCCM is now on its second year of implementation. Mr. Joel Montellana (NSTP and Special Projects Coordinator) relates that the outreach programs have been “sporadic” for some time, creating the need to re-focus on the activities of the center. “The question we always have to ask ourselves is whether we were able to improve the lives of the people around us.” He shares how LCCM ended up providing particular social development assistance to Pantbangan. “ In Metro Manila urban centers, you don’t see the results. The people seem to be unreceptive, especially the youth. Our help is misplaced. Until we stumbled upon Pantabangan.”


Pantabangan caters to 3 Environmental Services (ES)—the hydro-plants of NAPOCOR, California Energy, and Masiway. It provides irrigation for 128 ha of rice lands, producing 70% of the rice in our country. However, there is no need for a close inspection to observe that 17 of the mountains are denuded. Mr. Montellana expresses the irony he observed: that the source of the country’s basic necessities is home to the very communities who lack these basic necessities. “We will give assistance to people. In line with LCCM vision, we also recognize the fact that Pantabangan Dam is a cultural heritage.” Under the program, the institution was able to contribute mango seedlings around the vicinity of the municipal hall, way back in 2003. Through the NSTP, there are plans to reforest the area within 25 years. “But from my projection, I think we can do it in 7 years.”


The NSTP program makes it a point to provide livelihood programs for the people, so that they will have other sources of income as an alternative to the production of charcoal. This 2-3 year action program coincides with the time of maturity of the 2400 seedlings of fruit-bearing trees that were already planted. This is one way of ensuring that the people will refrain from kaingin. Similar to DENR’s Community Based Forest Management Program (CBFMP), it can also be noted that the presence of fruit bearing trees will allow families to gather products to sell, without cutting off the trees. La Consolacion College has established links with Central Luzon State University to help systematize goat raising. Future seminars include pastillas-making, aquaculture, dressmaking, paper-making (from cogon), and the production of virgin coconut oil. NSTP thus assists in training around 40-50 beneficiaries to be entrepreneurs. Montellana emphasizes the need for intervention in order to protect environmental resources.


One of the remarkable qualities of LCCM’s NSTP is its ability to pioneer in entrepreneurial thrusts while recognizing Pantabangan as a “Biodiversity hotspot”. Unlike more bureaucratic institutions of the state, it is able to implement projects while conserving its outputs. Montellana shares that this proceeds from a simple principle of economics—to empower people by sharing resources that can be multiplied.

There are plans to build an eco-tourist destination to generate employment opportunities aside from the livelihood programs mentioned. Mr. Montellana also explains that Pantabangan is a “stop over” of migratory birds from China, thus the viability of an aviary in the area. There are also plans to establish a wellness center, a resort area, and a mini-zoo. Through the triumvirate of La Consolacion, Local Government Units (LGUs), and beneficiaries, there is much hope in accomplishing the dream of converting Pantabangan into an eco-tourist center.

Current thrusts of the NSTP include negotiations with government agencies such as DENR and DOT. There are proposals for the students to carry out their OJT under the mini-laboratory of DENR as well as the projects of DOT on eco-tourism.


Mother Rita Barcelo Pastoral Foundation Center


The center also has been implementing a feeding program every Thursday. There are positive changes with the introduction of the concept of community in the area. Mr. Hernandez adds, “Nagkakaroon din sila ng unity. Halimbawa, kapag mayroong may utang, sinasalo ng iba.” The BEC is composed of 7 members, who recruit another 7.


Students in La Consolacion are made part of this dream through outreach activities. Children from underprivileged baranggays are brought to La Consolacion where they interact with students from Kinder to Grade 3 through activities. The students bring food, school supplies, and uniforms they have outgrown. On the other hand, students from Grade 4 to Grade 6 are brought to more structured areas such as the home for the aged, the children of Tayuman, Mother Theresa Orphanage, and the public school of Geronimo Santiago Elementary School. Thus, students from La Consolacion are taught to carry out an Augustinian apostolate at a tender age. From college, BST practicum students have repainted the Day Care Center for the re-opening for this school year. Other highlights include immersion in Payatas, as well as symposia integrated with their subjects in the social studies (Urban Poor, environmental issues and eco-awareness, and indigenous populations). The Center has also established links with DSWD and Local Government Units.


Future activities of the Center include a Health Mission in September and Phase II of the relief operation in Infanta, Quezon to be held next year. There will be a Bingo social on July 31, to foster interaction among the community and prepare them for a cooperative for future livelihood programs. There is also a planned exposure trip/ immersion with theological reflection at Avancena Highschool entitled “Missionaries of Charity”.■

LCCM Honors Future Nurses

LCCM Celebrated its 3rd Candle Lighting and Nurse Capping Ceremony last July 1, 2005 at the Mother Consuelo Auditorium. Giving the message was Dra. Eufemia Octaviana. Nursing students of LCCM are being molded to be “a-Christ in person.


The School of nursing will soon produce its first batch of graduates in 2006. The institution has high hopes that these students will be “nurses with a heart”. As Academic Dean Shirley Pena said “Nursing is more than just a job. It is both an art and a science”. With Administrative Dean Farida Brillantes in the ranks, LCCM is confident that the institution will produce competent nurses in the field.

PERSPECTIVES

Knowledge for a Mission

The theme of this issue discusses how LCCM continues to re-invent itself each year. Beyond improvements in our facilities and equipment—physical upgrades—LCCM refuses to rest on its laurels. This issue features paradigm shifts and creative strategies in instruction and the integration of digital technology in the learning process among others. Moreover, with the creativity that comes with a heterogeneous academic community, there are changes in the institutional structure to maximize the potentials of our personnel and welcome the expertise of individuals who each came from an entirely different academic environment.

A synthesis of faith and intellectual pursuit characterizes a strong Augustinian education. It means that Biblical discourses are articulated in the academe without compromising the standards of academic excellence. Rather, these serve as the pivotal point of academic excellence.

The College continually strives to deliver the needs that would equip its student-clientele to prepare them for institutions of the state and the market. A distinguishing mark of the institution is its commitment in equipping its students to be Filipinos with a mission to contribute significant changes in the society.

This is the reason behind the school’s commitment to provide them with the right tools (training in their respective disciplines integrated with the Liberal Arts) and get them involved in advocacy-centered programs such as NSTP and the Mother Rita Barcelo Pastoral Foundation Center to accomplish their mission.

The institution goes against the grain by taking extreme care in supervising how knowledge is consumed. Thus, in line with an Augustinian apostolate, the institution goes a step further by mentoring these “consumers of knowledge”.

The challenges that the institution faces each year is to continually provide tools (knowledge) that are relevant. The administrators and teachers are working hard, along with services that encourage its personnel to remove the ceilings in the learning process in order to pursue a globally competitive academic environment. LCCM is working double time. Surely our hopes will not go to waste.

PERSPECTIVES

Knowledge for a Mission


The theme of this issue discusses how LCCM continues to re-invent itself each year. Beyond improvements in our facilities and equipment—physical upgrades—LCCM refuses to rest on its laurels. This issue features paradigm shifts and creative strategies in instruction and the integration of digital technology in the learning process among others. Moreover, with the creativity that comes with a heterogeneous academic community, there are changes in the institutional structure to maximize the potentials of our personnel and welcome the expertise of individuals who each came from an entirely different academic environment.

A synthesis of faith and intellectual pursuit characterizes a strong Augustinian education. It means that Biblical discourses are articulated in the academe without compromising the standards of academic excellence. Rather, these serve as the pivotal point of academic excellence.

The College continually strives to deliver the needs that would equip its student-clientele to prepare them for institutions of the state and the market. A distinguishing mark of the institution is its commitment in equipping its students to be Filipinos with a mission to contribute significant changes in the society.

This is the reason behind the school’s commitment to provide them with the right tools (training in their respective disciplines integrated with the Liberal Arts) and get them involved in advocacy-centered programs such as NSTP and the Mother Rita Barcelo Pastoral Foundation Center to accomplish their mission.

The institution goes against the grain by taking extreme care in supervising how knowledge is consumed. Thus, in line with an Augustinian apostolate, the institution goes a step further by mentoring these “consumers of knowledge”.

The challenges that the institution faces each year is to continually provide tools (knowledge) that are relevant. The administrators and teachers are working hard, along with services that encourage its personnel to remove the ceilings in the learning process in order to pursue a globally competitive academic environment. LCCM is working double time. Surely our hopes will not go to waste.

Campaigning for Gender Awareness and Sensitivity

In line with an Augustinian Apostolate, various schools and units of LCCM are starting a campaign on Gender awareness. What is unique about the institution is the sensitivity to include males and females with heterogeneous gender orientations in the agenda. “Gender” as a category would allow recognition of the fact that individuals have multiple subject positions and identities that are complex. Thus, we are able to meet the varying needs of individuals and undertake research with this framework in mind.


RES-Gender Desk


The Research Center is holding the First Gender Film Festival from July 20-22. Critically acclaimed films—“Frida”, “Boys Don’t Cry” and “Bata, Bata Paano Ka Ginawa?” will be shown to LCCM students, faculty, and guests. The first two days will be held at the Mother Consuelo Auditorium. The third day of the festival (July 22) will be held at the Multi-Media room at International Center, where the official launch of the LCCM RES-Gender Desk will also push through. The Desk, spearheaded by Ms. Laya Reyes Boquiren, will focus on Gender Studies to enhance the research capabilities of the faculty and student leaders. Research initiatives will be published in a Gender Anthology.


College Guidance Office


The Guidance Center, under the leadership of Yorgos Lam will hold a seminar for college freshmen and highschool seniors on “Sexuality and Relationships: Male and Female Perspectives” on July 28 at the Mother Consuelo Auditorium. On August 25, Abegail Arenas will speak in an image enhancement workshop for college seniors entitled “Wacoal to Women Talk”. She is a professional model and was a Binibining Pilipinas title-holder. The Guidance Center is diligently organizing a series of activities with the inclusion of gender consciousness and sensitivity in its agenda, to be able to meet the needs of our dynamic student community.

Congratulations! LCCians Pass CPA Board Exams

The institution honors Evangeline Anchores and Ellen Grace Bautista for passing the May 2005 Certified Public Accountant (CPA) Board Licensure Examination. Both Anchores and Bautista have graduated BSA Magna cum Laude.

Newly Renovated LCCM Food Court Opens with a Blessing Ceremony

To start the year right, Father Thomas Prasoet from Thailand officiated the blessing of 8 counters and 5 booths at the newly renovated LCCM Food Court. Last June 14, Fr. Thomas prayed over the venue after Sister Jocelyn Widwid read from the Book of Genesis as an acknowledgement of God’s providence.

Reinventing the Guidance Office

The institution has a new Guidance Director for this academic year. Mr. Yorgos Lam shared his thoughts with LCCM Newsmagazine. “As the new Director of the Guidance Center, my vision for the guidance center is to make it the hub of personal excellence. As such, our mission is to guide the students to become globally competitive and responsible individuals. Our goal is to be able to reach out to the students, understand them and help them realize their full potential as a person, with the help of the different departments of our school.”

There are several innovations to be introduced by the Guidance program.One of these is the Guidance Hour, which is a one-hour-a-month counselor-student interaction session focused on the discussion of their personal situations. This group discussion has a common theme for all students to be discussed with the counselor.“The students are expected to have a clearer picture of who they are, as well as an understanding of their situation. This will be operationalized in all departments, from BED to College.” Another program is the E-Counseling. Originally an extension program for the Guidance Hour, E-Counseling involves students who are too shy to discuss their situation in front of other people.

“This scheme can be used to help these students open up, and eventually come to the guidance center to meet the counselor face to face. This is also applicable to all departments.”

There is also the Career Development Program. “Instead of presenting the career world in one day, the Guidance Center will gradually prepare them to meet their respective career challenges within the school year. This way, they will have more time to prepare for a job when they graduate.” The Guidance Center will also hold a "Career Opportunities" day where the graduating high school students will meet the different professionals and listen to what they say about being a professional. These are only some of the new programs of the Guidance Center. “More will come later, as the guidance counselors from all departments have been putting their heads together to come out with better service for the students. Some include the plan for making the Peer Facilitators Group an officially recognized extra-curricular organization, improving the process of psychological assessment and getting involved with nationally and internationally recognized organizations in line with the field of guidance and counseling. With all these said, I believe we are in the process of reinventing the Guidance Center.”

Yorgos Lam has trained consistently in the field of psychology. His BS in Psychology was earned at the Colegio de San Juan de Letran. He holds as MA in Psychology (clinical area of specialization) at the University of Santo Tomas. He is a clinical psychologist, with particular interests in Childhood and Adolescent Depression. Mr. Lam is also an active trainor and speaker in various areas in clinical and educational psychology. “Currently, my research is focused on coming up with a comprehensive picture of our student-population. The result of this work will help the guidance center understand more about the specific needs of our students and come out with effective programs to serve them better.” ■

Dean Jose Mario Maximiano: A Portrait of Excellence

There are several reasons we can be proud of the new Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences. Dean Jose Mario Maximiano serves as a model of academic excellence.

The new dean is actively involved in quality research and publications. His publications include a book on “Corporate Social Responsibility: Basic Principles and Best Practices”. It is a Historico-philosophical discourse in international business. It is about universal values that would aid CEOs and business leaders to set up their own CSR agenda, business stewardship, theory, and practice of corporate citizenship. Aside from bringing CSR to the educational mainstream, the essence of the text is about how the value of a corporation is determined by its contribution to society from which it draws its existence. Other publications include “Global Business Ethics for Filipinos,” “Spiritual Man: Issues in Christian Anthropology,” “The Signs of the Times and Social Doctrine of the Church: An Epistemological Basis,” and four other references in philosophy and business ethics. In fact, one would find him listed in the Library of Congress Authors (Asian Readings) and the John M. Echols Collection on Southeast Asia at Cornell University. Incidentally, he will also be one of the selected international authors of the Encyclopedia of Business Ethics and Society, a 2007 project of US-based Sage Publications.

Dr. Maximiano is active both in the national and international academe. He presented a paper entitled “Excellence and Equity” in Jakarta, Indonesia. Recently, he had the prestige of being the only Filipino educator invited to the Third Biennial Global Conference on Business Ethics held in Santa Clara University in California in 2005 for a round table discussion on ethical issues with multi-national executives. Dean Maximiano has always been an assiduous scholar. He has a PhD in Social Theology (Summa Cum laude) from the Universidad de Navarra, a Licentiate in Theology (Summa cum laude) a Master of Arts in Philosophy (Magna cum laude), at the University of Santo Tomas. He also holds an MBA from the Ateneo de Manila University.

Dr. Maximiano was a professorial lecturer in the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) and Master of Business Administration (MBA) Programs of the De La Salle University Graduate School of Business. He also served as a consultant of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) on CSR issues.

He was also a recipient of several awards. He was a Nominee to the Ten Outstanding Young Men of the Philippines in 1996 (Philippine Jaycees). He is also a Rector Magnificus Awardee for Academic Excellence at the University of Santo Tomas University in 1989. The School of Arts and Science can also be proud of their new dean, who, incidentally, is awarded an Honorary Life Membership by the Supreme Knight of the Knights of Columbus of the United States in 1989. Interestingly, the new dean is also polyglot, knowledgeable in foreign languages such as Latin, Spanish, French, Italian, German, and even Pidgin English.

As the Dean, Dr. Maximiano’s mission/vision is “to integrate Liberal Arts and Sciences with All Fields of Learning towards academic excellence; to promote Education as a Vocation by Integrating Faith and Work; and advocate Education as a Profession and to Integrate Techniques with values and principles by benching online and IT learning.” During the Student Orientation last June 22, Dean Jose Mario Maximiano emphasized the significance of the Liberal Arts for a holistic education. LCCM places importance on the integration of the Arts, Sciences, and Ethics. “Otherwise, we become good businessmen without a soul”. The “integrity of a Catholic education” serves as a critical voice in the professional realm. “To acquire knowledge is to acquire power—and no one should be allowed to wield such power without learning how to use it ethically and in a manner that is socially responsible”. ■