VSU President Edgardo Tulin delivers his State of the University Address (SUA) on Monday afternoon, November 21, 2022.

This was President Tulin’s (first) Academic Convocation after a 2-year hiatus due to the covid-19 pandemic. He is being joined by Vice Presidents of the VSU system, the Chancellors of VSU’s component campuses in Alang-alang, Isabel, Tolosa, and Villaba; other members of the University Administrative and Academic Council, the Directors of VSU’s research units, Deans of the graduate schools and students, the Department heads, support staffs, students, alumni and guests. There were some guests who were virtually present through watching the livestream.

Here are the highlights of President Tulin’s speech:

Tulin entitles the address as “Padayon Paglambo”

“it rightly describes and captures our aims and aspirations for the university.”

Pres. Tulin: Grateful for the successful return of the face-to-face classes

“We have been one of the first institutions in the country to implement limited face-to-face classes that started as early as March this year and we’re also one of the first to open our gates for a full return of our students that began in our Midyear classes this June.”

“I’m personally delighted to see us gather again on important occasions like this one wherein I present to you the humble accomplishments that we collectively achieved for the past years despite the ongoing challenges brought by the pandemic and the other disruptions brought by natural calamities.”

Pres. Tulin highlights the 2021 accomplishments

“Our accomplishments in the year 2021 covers the areas on: governance and management; teaching, learning and evaluation; personnel management; research and innovation; extension and linkages; support to students; improvement of our library services; infrastructure development; and quality assurance mechanisms.”

Governance and Management

Tulin: OVPSAS for students’ academic growth and personality development

“we’ve fully implemented our new organizational structure and created the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Services or the OVPSAS—a new designation that mainstreams student empowerment to meet the psychosocial, emotional, financial and academic needs of our students.”

“we’ve also conducted a clear consultation process for the appointment and designation of the different heads of offices within our system.”

Tulin: memoranda and advisories were released regularly

“Because of the ongoing threat of COVID-19, memoranda and advisories were regularly released to proactively update the university policies depending on the prevailing ground situation while also implementing free shuttle service for our employees to safely ferry them to the office and back to their respective homes.”

“We’ve rolled out a clear vaccination monitoring program that encouraged our faculty members and administrative staff to get inoculated in all our five campuses in the VSU system.”

Tulin cites the improvement of information and communication technologies use; hosting of activities on a limited capacity.

“In the same year, we’ve also harnessed the use of information and communication technologies and applied it for the improvement of our human resource management system”

“Despite the pandemic, we’ve also hosted activities on a limited capacity including the conduct of the CHED Regional Gawad Parangal and Regional Padyak Caravan to celebrate the victories in Philippine Higher Education.”

Teaching, learning and evaluation

Tulin introduces new normal education road map

“we’ve introduced a new normal education roadmap called the University Learning Continuity Plan that sets the direction for planning and curriculum development, learning delivery and a clear process of evaluation as our feedback mechanism for the experiences of our students.”

Tulin mentions VSU’s readiness on limited face-to-face classes

“We’ve passed the assessment visits of CHED with a high score for the implementation of limited face-to-face classes, and we’ve also installed signages for effective monitoring of foot traffic within our classrooms.”

“…students expressed their preference for limited face-to-face in the surveys that we’ve conducted to evaluate our overall readiness for a blended learning environment.”

“We’ve also distributed pen tablets to all our departments and spearheaded workshops on how to effectively integrate this device in our online classes.”

Personnel Management

Tulin on personnel management, ‘We’ve developed manuals for our management information system’

“Our recruitment, selection and placement has been fully automated by posting available positions online that also made way for online filing of application and interview. We’ve developed manuals for our management information system covering updated policies on electronic attendance and document tracking systems.”

“Our administration also facilitated 35 in-house training sessions for our faculty and staff that includes webinars for mental health and physical wellness including virtual awarding ceremonies to recognize the commitment to public service of our faculty and staff.”

Research and Innovation

Tulin cites research and innovations of the university

“ We've spearheaded a total of 177 ongoing research projects that generated almost 100 million worth of funds for the university that covered almost 32,000 trained beneficiaries from all parts of the country.”

“We’ve also received almost 11 million pesos worth of funds for our projects on technology commercialization that covers agri-aqua technology business incubation, food value chain improvement of vegetables and tilapia in Eastern Visayas, and the further strengthening of TBI support services.”

“We’ve registered 24 patents and accomplished 16 new IP filings with 17 pending IPR applications and 10 commercialized technologies for 2021. We accounted for a total of 89 publications last year with the citation score of our published works continuously increasing year by year.”

Extension and linkages

Tulin: We’ve successfully forged 71 agreements and linkages

“...42 of which are local agreements, 24 are national partnerships and 5 international engagements. For our internationalization efforts, we spearheaded collaborations with universities and research institutes in Japan, Germany, Czech Republic, Cambodia, Belgium, Samoa and Fiji islands.”

“...we were able to showcase some of our community development initiatives that have spurred local and inclusive development in the countryside.”

“We’re currently laying the important groundwork for the operationalization of our Futures Thinking Initiative that aspires to make us a green metropolis national university of the Visayas anchored on our sustained efforts in sweetpotato and jackfruit research and innovation activities.”

Tulin: Our support to students has always been strong

“In line with automation, we’ve also facilitated the improvement of our online enrollment system that allowed us to increase our enrollment count across all our campuses in the VSU system even during a pandemic.”

“On top of that, we beefed up our efforts on psychosocial support services for our students through regular student dialogues and consultations including the conduct of webinars for mental health and physical wellness. “

“We’ve been granted by CHED of 746 beneficiaries of the Tertiary Education Subsidy (TES) for 2021, 92 scholars from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), and 21 locally funded graduate scholarships and fellowships open for both Filipino and foreign students.”

Tulin mentions VSU Library as region’s best

“...by acquiring new physical books and online subscriptions, automating its services for e-book lending, remote access and other logistic services”

“...we hope to bring in more development in our existing library infrastructure and reading resources for the coming years.”

Tulin: We’re also close to completing our Land Use Development Plan

“...our policy guide in the effective utilization of our existing land resources that can potentially generate future income for.”

Tulin cites VSU’s awards; now one of the emerging universities in the Philippines and in Southeast Asia

“Because of the many achievements we’ve done in 2021, we’ve been raking in institutional awards including individual recognitions for our faculty and students.”

“We’ve also been doing well in many independent ranking systems here in the country”

“Aside from academic awards and licensure examination performance, our students also performed very well in other extra-curricular activities because of their leadership and creative abilities.”

Tulin mentions 2021 collective achievement

“...we will divide this report according to our collective achievements in terms of administration; academic and student affairs; research, extension and innovation; planning and resource generation; and the current accomplishments of our component campuses.”

Tulin again talks about VSU’s linkage and partnerships

“We’ve already secured 51 agreements for partnerships composed of 32 local linkages, 12 national agreements, and 7 international partnerships.”

“We've already opened our gates to foreign exchange faculty members as early as March this year with the arrival of Dr. Michael Struk of Masaryk University.”

“We continue to strengthen our relationship with the European Union in line with our directions for massive internationalization of our curricular programs. In line with this, I represented the Philippines in the newly established regional block for higher education accreditation called the ASEAN Quality Assurance Network.”

“We’ve celebrated important milestones in our respective academic and research units while austerely celebrating our annual institutional anniversary. Another important academic event we co-spearheaded is the ICP South Workshop wherein we brought in researchers and experts from the University of Hasselt in Belgium with particular focus on modern statistical methods appropriate for research on disease mapping and microbiome data.”

Tulin mentions lifting of VSU mobility restrictions

“Our workforce went back to the university and we’ve gathered them that signal the slow opening of VSU to our students and our other constituents for face-to-face engagements and other important transactions.”

“Our implementation of the flexible learning modality has been well praised by our regional CHED Office that we scored perfectly in their remote monitoring evaluation according to us with a fully developed status as regards to the new normal education setup that we conducted for the university.”

Tulin lauds VSU in being the first Level IV AACCUP accredited institution in Visayas and Mindanao

“...scoring very well in the 9 areas evaluated for this assessment. Because of this, many SUCs are expected to come here and benchmark all our management operations which is a testament to our national reputation as one of the country's best higher education institutions.”

Tulin cites VSU’s ranking and ratings

“CHED Central Office recognized us for our 3-star QS rating and our inclusion in the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings that evaluated our accomplishments in the area of fulfilling the target of the Sustainable Development Goals.”

“For the first time, we broke into the Magic 10 circle of the Webometrics Ranking of World Universities placing 8th among the 366 public and private institutions in the country that were rated in their July 2022 edition”

“VSU made it this year to one of the world's most prestigious lists of best universities called the 2023 World University Rankings of Times Higher Education (THE). Our university, along with 5 other Philippine universities got a "Reporter" status, which means that we have been an active participant in this rankings process, even though we have not been officially ranked this year. We are therefore in the radar of global prestige because of this inclusion.”

Tulin: We’re the pioneering school in Region 8 to be allowed to hold limited face-to-face

“...for the second semester of School Year 2021 to 2022, we were allowed to hold limited face-to-face classes”

“This pushed us to prepare our classrooms and other facilities for the resumption of full and blended classes in the First Semester of School Year 2022 to 2023.”

Tulin: We are now on track to having more Level IV accredited graduate and undergraduate programs in the future

“We will soon offer AB Philosophy, the first non-sectarian educational institution in Eastern Visayas to offer this social science program. Other curricular offerings in the pipeline are the PhD in Food Science and Technology, Master of Science in Plant Breeding, and the Master of Science in Applied Economics.”

“VSU is also the first and only delivering institution in Region 8 to qualify for the upcoming professional board examination for food technologists that will be first implemented in 2023. “

Tulin mentions academic departments latest development in their own discipline

“For 2022, we’ve added three faculty scholars for advanced degrees, one for Master of Science and 2 for Doctoral degrees which makes our current count of 28 ongoing and continuing scholars for Master Science and 57 for those completing their PhDs.”

“The VSU College of Veterinary Medicine also spearheaded extension and community work in both Baybay City and Limasawa island to provide free veterinary services and information education campaigns to selected local government units.”

Tulin: Our enrollment rate continues to surge in the Main Campus

“...with our student population now at 9,245 inclusive of both undergraduate and graduate students for the First Semester of Academic Year 2022 to 2023.”

Tulin mentions the direction of aids for the devastation of Typhoon Agaton

“...various state universities and colleges all over the country came to our aid when we were devastated by Typhoon Agaton.”

“All the proceeds were directly distributed to different local government units where our students were residing. In Baybay City alone, 92 barangays and 23 zones were covered by this outreach project where food packs were distributed to affected students and their family members.”

Tulin indicates subscription of Google Workspace and Free WIFI services

“We now have a premium subscription to Google Workspace for Education that can be enjoyed by both faculty members and students allowing them to access online educational tools that can be useful for instruction in both online and in-person classes.”

“Now that our students are back in our campus, we’ve also rolled out our free WIFI services in strategic locations of both Upper and Lower Campuses where students can access the internet for free.”

Tulin stresses VSU students’ safety on campus

“… that's why we have been aggressive in our efforts to prepare them from different types of hazards and natural calamities by conducting disaster risk reduction training in partnership with the VSU Crisis Management Committee and the Bureau of Fire Protection.”

Tulin cites work opportunities abroad for VSU Graduates

“We’ve also conducted student placement initiatives by holding job-seeking webinars including labor education and employment coaching in partnership with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), and a Japanese company called Yoshinoya that offers work opportunities abroad for VSU graduates.”

Tulin: Graduate scholarships opened

“Graduate scholarship grants were opened for our exceptional graduates who obtained Latin Honors. As of this time, we have 10 new graduate students who became recipients of this special scholarship grant together with two foreign fellowships and one foreign graduate teaching assistantship.”

Tulin mentions the Destiny Library Management System

“For library services, the University Library just implemented the circulation module that allows online borrowing of books and resources using a platform called Destiny Library Management system.”

Tulin commends VSU students

“Our students continue to bring honor in 2022 by topping the licensure examination with our former Student Regent placing 6th in the March 2022 board exam for veterinarians while a graduate of VSU Tolosa also landed 4th place in the licensure examination for Fisheries professionals.”

“Our nursing faculty and students have also been recognized for their impressive research paper presentations in a national conference dedicated for nursing educators.”

Tulin mentions completed, and on-going research studies

“As one of the country’s research universities, the year 2022 brought in 45 completed research and 91 ongoing research projects as of this year.

“In extension work, we’ve approved a total of 49 extension project proposals for the first quarter of 2022 with 38 continuing projects and 11 news projects spread across the five campuses of the university”

Tulin: VSU partners with DOST Food Innovation Center

“In our efforts to commercialize some of our mature technologies, we partnered with the DOST Food Innovation Center in Western Visayas and a local fabricator company to explore the fabrication of our portable vacuum dryer that can soon be made available to local food processors and entrepreneurs.”

Tulin: VSU linked with the Armed Forces of the Philippines and collaborated with ABS-CBN foundation

“We’ve also linked with the Armed Forces of the Philippines to bring livelihood opportunities and provide second chances to rebel returnees who would like to restart their lives by engaging in peace efforts”

“ABSCBN Foundation worked with VSU and the Office of the Presidential Assistance for Reconstruction and Recovery for the establishment of a sweet potato processing center in Marabut, Samar.”

Tulin on NCRC and NARC

“Our drive to be inclusive has always been at the core of what we do by also providing extension services to differently-abled individuals. One project of our National Coconut Research Center (NCRC) collaborated with an organization called These Abled Persons Tierra Esperanza Farmers’ Association in Santa Fe, Leyte.”

“The National Abaca Research Center (NARC) also spearheaded training on abaca production and integrated pest management approaches where participants in three barangays of Baybay City received free abaca planting materials in partnership with the local government unit of Baybay City. “

Tulin: ‘We’ve successfully developed an optimized vacuum fryer’

“In the area of innovation, we’ve successfully developed an optimized vacuum fryer that was improved and refined for mechanized zero-waste processing system, as well as new products such as the SP-35 orange variant vacuum fried sweetpotato, and wine, grates, flour, and powder made from sweetpotato trimmings and tubers.”

Tulin mentions the installations of solar-powered lamp posts

“To reduce the cost of increasing power rates, our administration just completed the installation of a 200 solar-powered lamp posts in both the Upper and Lower Campuses of the VSU Main Campus. This is also important in ensuring the safety and security of on-campus residents now that in-person classes are currently implemented.”

Tulin: Upper and Lower Centennial Gates to be fully operational next week

“We will be inaugurating our new and improved Guardpost that we will be calling our Centennial Gates which is part of the 15 million pesos fencing project to secure the perimeters of the VSU Main Campus. Both Upper and Lower Centennial Gates will become fully operational starting next week”

Tulin stresses the need to build more classrooms

“With our ever-growing student population… we understand that we need to build more classrooms to keep up with the demand of our increasing enrollment rate year-by-year.”

“…we are now bidding on a new classroom complex beside the Old Library Building that can cater to general elective courses that will hopefully reduce our problem with lack of classrooms.”

Tulin mentions the inauguration of VSU Alang-alang’s new Admin Building

“…we’ve just completed a brand-new Administration Building that has been officially inaugurated in September this year.

… will soon be refurbished with basic amenities that will hopefully improve general services and operations in VSU Alangalang.”

Tulin: New building on the rise courtesy of Tingog Partylist

The Mechanical Engineering program of VSU Isabel delivered a 75% institutional passing percentage in the board exams.

“A new building courtesy of Tingog Party List is currently on the rise in this campus to increase the classroom capacity of VSU Isabel now that they have an increasing enrollment rate. “

Tulin: VSU Tolosa’s upcoming Library building, and proposed new programs

“… we’re on track in completing the New Library Building of this component campus that will also house some important administrative offices. “

“New program offerings are being proposed in this component campus including the offering of the Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology program, Bachelor of Culture and Arts Education and the Bachelor of Physical Education.”

Tulin cites VSU Villaba newly completed buildings

“… they just inaugurated a newly completed Administration Annex Building, Crop Science Laboratory including the completion of their new Multipurpose Gymnasium.”

“They also have a brand-new service vehicle that they can use for official travels and other office functions.”

Tulin reveals plans in the coming years

“In just a month, we have opened our gates to professors from Jember University, Czech University of Life Sciences, Mendelu University and Nagoya University. “

“Meanwhile, some of our faculty members and key officials have visited Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia including Europe and Japan to also do benchmarking tours as part of our massive internationalization program”

Application for Global Rankings

“We have been given a Reporter Status by Times Higher Education for this year and we hope to improve this next year guided by the suggestions given to us by our independent evaluators.

… our Quality Symonds application for global rankings is now in place and we’re hoping to be part of this elite circle as early as next year.”

Future Thinking Project

“Another big-ticket project that we will soon embark on is the Futures Thinking Project funded by the Philippine government that will make VSU as the lead national institution in mainstreaming sweet potato and jackfruit research, production and commercialization in the entire country.”

Pres. Tulin: Leyte 5th district representatives to improve our local health system

“Leyte 5th District Representative Carl Nicholas C. Cari and Baybay City Mayor Jose Carlos L. Cari to improve our local health system here in our area, we are now readying the blueprint for the establishment of the first College of Medicine located in a state university here in Region 8.”

“The Congressional Panel for Health has recently approved our proposal that will soon lead to budget appropriations that will help us build a building and recruit faculty manpower who will run our very own medical course here in VSU.”

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