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‘Undeserving’: Students question UST’s award on virtual education delivery

2 min readUST won in the Flexible and Responsive Management category conferred by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and REX Education, and Philippine Business for Social Progress.
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Published over 2 years ago on October 29, 2021

by Angela Gabrielle Atejera

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(Photo by Jester Ramos/TomasinoWeb)

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The University bore “exemplary recognition” for its enriched virtual mode (EVM) of instruction program entry in the 1st Gawad Edukampyon Awards on Monday, Oct. 25.

UST won in the Flexible and Responsive Management category conferred by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and REX Education, and Philippine Business for Social Progress.

“This is a genuine testimony of the University’s commitment to excellence, to be constantly ahead of the times, and to be a trailblazer in education, always forward-looking and exceeding expectations,” the University’s Rector Magnificus Very Rev. Fr. Richard Ang, O.P. said .

Alongside UST, the Philippine Normal University’s “PNU CHED HiEd Bayanihan” also bagged an award in the same category.

The award was granted to Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) with an outstanding management response of ensuring the continuity of education amidst disruption. This included HEIs who have “exhibited agility and capacity to efficiently and strategically transition learning systems.”

Needs more fixing

The University’s EVM program faced mixed criticisms from its students upon news of its recent award.

They believe that their experiences in UST’s e-learning system amidst the pandemic should not yet be considered as “excellent” due to inconsiderate policies and sporadic technical issues.

“I cannot say na ‘excellent’ ‘yung experience [on EVM] kasi even our instructors also encountered several problems throughout its implementation. In my case, naging mahirap ‘yong adjustments and I think the retention of lessons ay mas bumaba,” BS Medical Technology student Luke Fajilan told TomasinoWeb.

Fine Arts and Design sophomore Jona Salonga thinks that UST was “undeserving” of the award, as she experienced some difficulties with her teachers.

“I usually struggle with my internet connection during live virtual meetings and recorded sessions. Also, the unreasonable workload and tight deadlines that are being given. It is basically hard to comply with everything especially during this pandemic. Some teachers don’t teach effectively and tend to be inconsiderate,” Salonga said.

AB Legal Management student Iyel Arafiles saw that UST’s recognition was “ironic.”

“I truly believe that winning the award is as ironic as it gets, as students get drowned by academic requirements and a large number of units that the students are required to get. The EVM is tolerable but not excellent,” he said.

Occupational therapy sophomore Frances Pagaduan, shared the same sentiments with Fajilan, Salonga, and Arafiles as she stated that students are already tired.

“Sa totoo lang, students at this point have the same sentiments already. Lahat kami pagod na from this set-up. Kaya naman ayusin. It just sucks that we always have to beg for something na dapat naman talaga cinoconsider na for students. We are not robots, we are also humans,” Pagaduan said.

EVM, introduced during the first term of Academic Year 2020–2021, was the University’s official mode of instruction amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

E-learning

Gawad Edukampyon

Commission on Higher Education

REX Education

Philippine Business for Social Progress

Profile picture of Angela Gabrielle Atejera

Angela Gabrielle Atejera

Assistant Reports Editor

Angela Gabrielle Atejera was the Assistant Reports Editor of TomasinoWeb. Before pledging herself to the org, she took a three-year hiatus from journalism to pursue her calling for the health sciences. However, her love for reporting never left her, and she eventually found her way back to writing–now 9 years into the field. You may have seen Angela geared with a chunky backpack while running through the streets as she covered the 2022 national elections, rallies, and University events. Currently, Angela is pursuing her degree in medical technology, as evidenced by her knack for doodling squiggly microorganisms in her free time. She also plays the piano to soothe her soul, like a true Renaissance woman.

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