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Aktiboto targets maximum youth involvement for 2016 polls

THE UNIVERSITY’S Central Commission on Elections (COMELEC) Vice-Chairperson Raymond John Naguit presented on Wednesday night the Aktiboto projects aimed for maximum youth involvement for the coming 2016 elections.

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THE UNIVERSITY’S Central Commission on Elections (COMELEC) Vice-Chairperson Raymond John Naguit presented on Wednesday night the Aktiboto projects aimed for maximum youth involvement for the coming 2016 elections.

Aktiboto is a voter’s education program spearheaded by the COMELEC in hopes of encouraging more involvement from Thomasians and partners from different universities and organizations during election season.

Sana, masama rin po natin ang iba’t-ibang mga unibersidad at mga election advocacy group because a political movement requires collaboration para mas maipakita natin ang tunay na lakas ng boses ng kabataan,” Naguit said.

Naguit also serves as the director for the said program.

He said that Aktiboto would hold contests in song writing and tagline making in order to encourage the youth with different interests and advocacies.

Representatives of different colleges and organizations officially launched the Aktiboto Voter’s Education Program through the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding last Sept. 16.

Among the different organizations are the Alumni Association Corporated (AAC) represented by Mr. John Simon, an alumni and Aktiboto advocate, UST Social Media Bureau, The Varsitarian, TomasinoWeb, and the different faculties and colleges in the University of Santo Tomas (UST).

The grand launch of Aktiboto was preceded by a forum which featured speakers who emphasized on the need for voters’ education.

Education as a pursuit for Filipino excellence

Patrick Joson, one of the guest speakers and a representative of Yabang Pinoy, a partner organization of Aktiboto, said that the lack of awareness of some voters can lead to the proclamation of the wrong candidate.

“[…] Karamihan ng ating mamamayan ay hindi man lang naka-apak ng yun (eskwelahan). Yun yung totoo na nangyayari at yun din ang ginagamit ng pulitika at ng gobyerno,” Joson said.

He added that the educated must do their part and bring awareness to the people and make a positive change for the future by going out of their comfort zones in pursuit of Filipino excellence.

John Simon, also a guest speaker, said in the question and answer portion that the masses should study the candidates to know if their advocacies match up to what they need.

Kailangan po natin alamin kung bakit sila nandyan at kung ano yung bukod tanging trabaho nila kasi kung hindi natin alam kung ano yung bukod tanging trabaho nila hindi natin alam kung bakit sila iboboto doon,” Simon said.

READ  Vice presidential debate in UST scheduled for April

The Aktiboto program seeks the promotion of stronger youth involvement and participation and for the Thomasians to help partner communities outside of UST in educated and responsible voting.

The Fault in our Elections

Dennis C. Coronacion, a faculty member of the Faculty of Arts and Letters, brought to light the reality of bloc-voting, citing the Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) and Visayan groups as examples.

“So papaano ginagawa ng isang grupo kinakailangan ng istruktura, may namumuno, may opisyales […] may napapala ang mga miyembro,” Coronacion said.

Coronacion talked about the concept of “Realpolitik” and its basic idea of practical or material factors with some members getting appointed a position in the government.

Realpolitik is a concept in political science that refers to a type politics that relies on practicalities rather than ideologies.

“In its worst form, it leads to what we call ‘state capture’ […] nagiging alila ng mga ilang grupo yung ating gobyerno sa madaling salita,” he said.

Thomasian alumni and Acting Director of the national COMELEC Attorney Rey Doma explained the mechanics on voting and presented projects designed to contribute for an “orderly campaign.”

One of the presented projects was the ‘iRehistro Project’ which, according to Doma, is an online accomplishment for application forms for registration to minimize time in applying to become a registered voter.

Doma also warned Thomasians about politicians who engage in vote-buying and ballot snatching saying that “With better human participation, nababawasan yung ganitong problema […] Hindi na natin maiiwasan yan at nasa politician- sa kandidato na yan.” -Y.N.H.

Photo by Johmar Damiles

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UST Tiger Radio bags award in int’l college radio competition

The radio broadcasting arm of the University wins Best Audience in the 11th edition of World College Radio where 24 college radio stations from across the world participated.

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Photo courtesy of UST Tiger Radio

The University’s radio broadcasting station, UST Tiger Radio, was recognized in the 2021 World College Radio, a competition based in the United States.

The College Radio Foundation on Tuesday, Nov. 23, named the station, the lone representative of the Philippines, for having the Best Audience in the 24-hour global marathon of the World College Radio.

Now on its 11th cycle, the event saw 24 college radios across the world, from Asia and Europe to Latin America. With the theme, “In Tough Times, We Thrive,” the event highlighted the global efforts made by university radio stations to keep their production alive amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tiger Radio’s theme for this year was #USTResilientRadio, which showcased the station’s measures in treading on and adapting to the so-called “new normal” in radio production.

Eric Galang, the MOR station head and an alumnus of the Faculty of Arts and Letters’ Communication program, was the special guest for Tiger Radio’s Off-Air segment. There, he talked about radio and the impact it made on his life.

Other college radio stations recognized were England’s Surf Radio for Best Music Selection, Best Programming, and Best Overall Effort; USA’s WMSC 90.3 for Best Audio Production; Colombia’s Estación for Best Promotional Effort; and Sweden’s K103 Gothenburg Student Radio for Best Use of Theme.

Founded in 2010, the College Radio Foundation has been holding the World College Radio competition, which gathers international radio stations across the globe to share their best practices in production.

Paolo Alejandrino is a marketing content strategist for UST Tiger Media Network.

Paolo Alejandrino
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UST to expand F2F classes for certain programs

UST is eyeing to submit their applications for the resumption of limited in-person classes in proposed academic programs before December upon the approval of the University Crisis Management Committee.

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Jacqueline Martinez/TomasinoWeb

The University will be expanding in-person classes to other programs where the intended learning outcomes cannot be fully achieved with Enriched Virtual Mode of instruction (EVM), Vice-Rector for Academic Affairs Cheryl Peralta and secretary general Fr. Louie Coronel, O.P. said in a joint statement.

According to them, UST is eyeing to submit their applications for the resumption of limited in-person classes in proposed academic programs before December upon the approval of the University Crisis Management Committee (UCMC).

“These will mainly be skills-based courses that require in-person instruction. We will likewise determine which year levels and courses will be prioritized per program to progressively increase the number of students and academic staff who will enter the campus at any given time,” they said.

“As soon as the proposals of academic units are approved by the UCMC, the retrofitted facilities are ready for visit, and the documentary requirements have been completed by the academic units, we can submit their applications even before December as was relayed during the town hall meeting with CHED,” the statement said.

This is in line with the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases’ approval of  Resolution 148-G. This entails the Commission on Higher Education’s proposed phased implementation of limited face-to-face (LFTF) classes for all programs under Alert Levels 1,2, and 3 released on Nov. 16.

In a press statement, acting Presidential spokesman Karlo Nograles said that “phase one of the implementation of LFTF classes will commence on December 2021 onwards, while phase two will begin in January 2022 onwards.”

Since June, the University has already started LFTF classes for medical and health allied programs.

On the University’s preparedness

Already-established institutional health protocols and standards for the current LFTF programs in the University shall be upheld during the resumption of expanded in-person classes.

The health protocols include the protocol for contract tracing and reporting of cases; for screening and detection, containment, and lockdown; for referral and transfer; and for isolation, quarantine, and COVID-19 testing.

“Our academic units are preparing the face-to-face training plans appropriate to their programs, consulting with stakeholders, coordinating with the Facilities Management Office (FMO) for the retrofitting of facilities, the Health Service for orientation on health protocols, and OVRAA for preparing the documentary requirements,” the statement read.

Moreover, the University’s digital IDs will be utilized to log contract tracing and health declaration features of Thomasians participating in limited in-person classes. Thus, students will be required to update their health conditions, vaccination status, and any contact with COVID-19 patients in the Thomasian Online Medical Services and Support (ThoMedSS)  website.

Health information collected through the new automated system will be monitored by the UST Health Service.

Angela Gabrielle Magbitang Atejera
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Thomasian artist bags 1st place in global art competition

Bricx Martillo Dumas, a graduate of the College of Fine Arts and Design, led the competition among 208 applications from 58 countries.

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"Nexus" by Bricx Martillo Dumas. Photo courtesy of DigitalArt4Climate and Bricx Martillo Dumas' Facebook page.

A Thomasian alumni won first place in the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) art competition on Sunday, Nov. 14.

Bricx Martillo Dumas, a graduate of the College of Fine Arts and Design, led the competition among 208 applications from 58 countries.

His winning piece entitled “Nexus” showcased a hand holding a cigarette and a plastic material against a plain red background. This was the only entry from the Philippines and Southeast Asia.

Four winners were selected through online public voting using Facebook reactions. Dumas’ art has garnered 825 reactions as of writing.

Dumas said that joining the competition was his chance to both represent the Philippines and advocate for climate action.

“Eight years ago, my hometown suffered from the wrath of [Super] Typhoon Haiyan. It changed my life forever. Should we wait for another typhoon stronger than Haiyan just to realize that this world is suffering from mass extinction? Or should we be the change that this world needs? Our time is now,” Dumas said in a video by DigitalArt4Climate.

“Nexus” was one of the selected 30 creations “with a great level of art skills and unique ideas about climate action” that will be auctioned off by DigitalArt4Climate to support the Sustainable Development Goals and UN Agenda 2030.

“DigitalArt4Climate” is an initiative in partnership with UN-Habitat that utilizes its resources for climate empowerment.

Larraine Castillo
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