Alumni push for scientific research, agri dev’t

The UP Alumni Council, the advisory body of the UP Alumni Association (UPAA), passed resolutions on the pursuit of scientific research and the development of the agriculture sector in its meeting on August 17 at Ang Bahay ng Alumni, UP Diliman.

The Council meets each year on the day before the general homecoming.

UP Alumni Association President and Alumni Regent Ramon Maronilla welcomes the members of the Alumni Council and calls the meeting to order. (Photo by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)

On scientific research and development, the Council agreed that the UPAA will do the following: urge the UP administration to prioritize scientific research and development in the curriculum; and, “exhort UP alumni in congress and the executive branch to legislate and implement laws that encourage and enhance scientific research and development in the country”.

To develop the agriculture sector, the Council resolved that the Association will encourage and help create non-government organizations (NGOs) that will promote agricultural management and productivity based on the Coalition for Agricultural Modernization in the Philippines, Inc. (CAMP) model.

It will aim to “raise awareness on the plight of the agricultural sector and to create public discourse on finding solutions to the problems through public symposia”. These solutions will then be endorsed to concerned government agencies for action.

The UPAA will also urge the legislative and executive branches of government to “prioritize the development of the agricultural sector to reduce poverty and attain food security” in order to satisfy the requirements of the country’s growing population.

These resolutions were based on the earlier presentations of the meeting’s main speakers, 2018 UPAA Lifetime Achievement Awardee, Engr. Filemon Berba Jr., and 2018 UPAA Most Distinguished Alumnus, Dr. Ruben Villareal.

Engr. Filemon Berba Jr., 2018 UPAA Lifetime Achievement Awardee (Photo by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)
Dr. Ruben Villareal, 2018 UPAA Most Distinguished Alumnus (Photo by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)

Berba’s “Science and Technology: Addressing Long-Term Inclusive Growth” highlighted the role of S&T in economic development. The former UP regent lamented the fact that the Department of Science and Technology had one of the lowest budget allocations and he advocated for better technology-based vocational courses.

Berba is a staunch advocate of S&T and is the president of the Philippine Foundation for S&T, a non-stock, non-profit private organization. He cited the Foundation’s Philippine Science Centrum and its travelling exhibit as great examples of ways of sparking interest in S&T among Filipinos.

Villareal, on the other hand, talked about CAMP, a non-stock, non-profit NGO where he serves as a board member. The former UP Los Baños chancellor said that the organization was a think tank that provided services such as policy recommendations and technical advice to improve the capabilities of the agriculture sector. One of its initiatives is the promotion of farming viable produce apart from rice, such as fruits and vegetables, which helps address food security and contributes to economic gains. (Arlyn VCD Palisoc Romualdo, UP MPRO)

UP President Danilo Concepcion shared news on infrastructure development in the University at the Alumni Council Meeting. Read the full story here: PDLC updates Alumni Council on infra projects

Written by UP MPRO