Connect with us

News

Thomasians slam proposed mandatory ROTC

“Nationalism through blind obedience is superficial and potentially dangerous to our own countrymen.”

Published

on

A student holds a placard denouncing the proposed mandatory ROTC during a protest in front UST Gate 2 in August 2019 | Christine Anmmarie Tapawan/TomasinoWeb

Thomasians denounced the passage of proposed mandatory Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) during the House Committee hearing on bills mandating the inclusion of the program in Grades 11 and 12.

“Nationalism through blind obedience is superficial and potentially dangerous to our own countrymen,” Institute of Information and Computing Sciences Public Relations Officer Carl Jeric Mataga said during the joint meeting at the House of Representatives on Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.

Mataga emphasized that a strong sense of nationalism is requisite in serving the nation, but students should be allowed to choose how they are going to serve the country.

“We can achieve this through teaching our students the history of the land they live in and the values we hold as a country and providing them the avenues that help their fellow countrymen such as through the National Service Training Program [NSTP] which we have right now,” he said.

Mataga also cited the incident of violence which involved Mark Welson Chua, the former UST ROTC cadet who was murdered after exposing the anomalies in the University’s ROTC.

“The problem with the issues within ROTC is that these injustices are systematic,” he said. “In Chua’s case, he questioned this unjustice system that he witnessed and he was killed for it. What kind of honorable system allows people of such character to achieve such high ranks?”

External Vice President of UST Senior High School Humanities and Social Sciences Society Mary Anjannette Santos also said that mandatory ROTC “will only further perpetuate its known culture of violence” rather than instilling nationalism.

“It cannot be a requirement for students to take part in their country’s armed forces in times of war or conflict,” Santos said. “This impedes our right…this oppresses our academic freedom. “

She also said that the mandatory ROTC will mean heavier workloads for students and that the lawmakers should review K to 12 program which still has pending issues in its implementation.

“Nationalistic perspective on the solutions of the country’s social ills can be best inculcated in the students through education,” Santos said.

“The urge of the youth to resist against foreign invaders or colonizers and to defend the state can be best generated through the deeper understanding of how and why the Filipinos in the past fought against it,” she added.

On Mark Chua’s case

Some of the resource persons and legislators during the hearing inferred that the scrapping of ROTC was because of the alleged violence in ROTC and the nationwide reaction to Chua’s murder.

The Department of National Defense (DND) denied the reported anomalies.

These are all allegations. All those that were responsible were charged in court, and they were held criminally liable,” Defense Legal Affairs Chief Atty. Norman Daanoy said.

Recent updates on Chua’s case, however, say that the other suspects, Paul Tan and Michael Manangbao, still remain at large.
“There are other issues which we want to raise connected with the ROTC, but upon investigation it is not even related to ROTC. They are just using ROTC just to oppose the revival of ROTC,” Daanoy said.

Possible alternatives

University of the Philippines (UP) Vanguard Chairman Emeritus Gilbert Reyes proposed that “genuine citizen service program” would be a better replacement for mandatory ROTC because military deals in external threats, while what has been usually occurring were disasters and lawlessness.

“There are other problems, and yet we cannot actually call on our citizenship to help us in those regards. So there are many departments of government that have nowhere to go. If you have a need for deployment nowadays, there is only one place to go…the Armed Forces of the Philippines,” Reyes said.

“If we direct our limited resources to training a citizenry to render service to a wide range of potential public services, then we are actually spreading our limited resources to a greater number of beneficiaries,” he added.

Kabataan party-list representative Sarah Elago said that inculcating nationalism and discipline among students should be a part of a bigger reform that would educate them on humanitarian principles and protection of human dignity.

“Kung gusto talaga nating baguhin yung sistema ng edukasyon at magkaroon ng mga makabayan na mga estudyante na handang magsilbi sa bayan, kailangan natin ng mas makabuluhan na reporma sa edukasyon,” Elago said in an interview with TomasinoWeb.

“Sa kasalukuyan at in the past, meron na ring efforts yung Kabataan para gawin yon. Ang tawag doon [ay] yung expanded NSTP bill,” she said.

The freedom to choose how to serve the country, according to Elago, is the foundation of the expanded NSTP bill.

“So dapat natin ‘yong protektahan. At hindi dapat puwersahin ang mga estudyante na mag-take ng mandatory ROTC,” Elago said.

Comments

News

CSC lambasts Duterte’s ‘apathetic’ threats; launches donation drive

“We recognize the purpose of the quarantine. However, despite the implementations of these policies, they remain fruitless, unsteady, and ineffective.”

Published

on

Carmina Beatriz Dizon/TomasinoWeb

Fruitless, unsteady, and ineffective. This was how the University’s Central Student Council (CSC) described the national government’s efforts to contain the COVID-19 pandemic as it lambasted the “apathetic” threats of the administration towards the people.

In a statement released Saturday, April 4, CSC along with Local Student Councils urged President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration for responsible governance in managing the public health crisis.

“We recognize the purpose of the quarantine […] However, despite the implementations of these policies, they remain fruitless, unsteady, and ineffective,” the statement read.

Moreover, the statement outlined its condemnation in its crisis management from the inadequate test kits, overpriced personal protective equipment, the condition of frontline health workers to the military’s alleged abuse of power.

“The Thomasian community strongly urges the government to understand the sentiments of the marginalized, to heed their calls instead of resorting to violence, and to pay attention to constructive criticism aimed at correcting the flawed system.” 

The statement, which was released a day after Pres. Duterte’s impromptu public address, also denounced the violent dispersal and arrest of Sitio San Roque residents demanding relief goods and financial assistance.

It also reminded the government that “it is the people who put them in their position,” and added further that “what we give, we can always take back.”

‪MUST READ: The UST-CSC and LSCs call for responsible governance amid the COVID-19 pandemic and condemn all forms of…

University of Santo Tomas Central Student Councilさんの投稿 2020年4月4日土曜日

Donation drive

Last March 27, the CSC in partnership with the Student Organizations Coordinating Council launched a financial donation drive for the workers of the Tan Yan Kee Student Center.

Alongside with this, respective colleges have arranged financial assistance to their local City Service personnel and security workers. 

"Kindness can reach wounds that only compassion can heal." As of 6:30 PM, April 1, 2020, we have already raised PHP…

University of Santo Tomas Central Student Councilさんの投稿 2020年4月1日水曜日

 

Comments

Continue Reading

News

CSC pushes for online class suspension amid UST guidelines

The Central Board recommended the use of online modules like “handouts, video tutorials, and pre-recorded lectures” which the students can use during the break.

Published

on

Carmina Beatriz Dizon/TomasinoWeb

Eight days after Metro Manila was put under a “community quarantine,” the UST Central Student Council (CSC) Central Board pushed for the suspension of online classes until April 14, 2020 amid the University’s alternative teaching-learning guidelines.  

To make most of the month-long class suspension due to the community quarantine which was later heightened by the government, online classes were introduced to carry on with the semester.

CSC President Robert Dominic Gonzales, however, stressed the differences in the resources of the students to support their online classes.

Students continue to face challenges in complying to these online activities due to factors like internet stability and lack of gadgets like computers and laptops.

A survey was conducted among local colleges to monitor the concerns and statuses of the Thomasian community.

For instance, in the College of Commerce and Business Administration and College of Tourism and Hospitality Management, more than half of the students of each college have no stable internet connection.

The Board recommended the use of online modules like “handouts, video tutorials, and pre-recorded lectures” which the students can use during the break.

Focusing on other matters

In light of the pandemic, Gonzales emphasized the need for the psychological and mental health of the community to be focused on, which is not only limited to the students.

The well-being of the faculty members, non-academic personnel, and the administration is a matter of priority as well in this time of crisis.

Gonzales is with high hopes to the administration’s approval of CSC’s appeal.

“I am sure that the administration listens to our concerns, most especially during these crucial times,” Gonzales said.

He also expressed his gratitude to the backbone of the University amid this health-related crisis.

“[W]e also give utmost gratitude and salute to them for all the efforts that they have exhausted to ensure a holistic approach on the well-being of the Thomasian community,” he added.

When asked if it is most likely to extend the second semester if the administration approves the appeal, Gonzales said that: “The decisions regarding the academic calendar and special terms are to be determined by the administration.”

However, the Board alongside local colleges are “much willing to provide help and support” the endeavors of the University by seeking suggestions from the student body.

 

Comments

Continue Reading

News

UST shifts to self-paced instruction amid quarantine period

The University’s updated Collective Institutional Guidelines on COVID-19 notes that the current state of calamity and quarantine regulations limit the capacity of students and faculty members to participate in regularly scheduled online classes.

Published

on

Jacqueline Martinez/TomasinoWeb

[UPDATED] The University will now implement a self-paced instruction amid the quarantine period in Luzon

In the University’s updated Collective Institutional Guidelines on COVID-19 released on March 20, “[r]egularly scheduled daily online classes shall no longer be required” for both students and faculty members.

The updated guidelines notes that the current state of calamity and quarantine regulations limit the capacity of students and faculty members to participate in regularly scheduled online classes.

Faculty members shall still continue providing learning materials which includes video lectures, readings and discussion sessions for students’ self-paced instruction in preparation for formal instruction once classes resume.

Academic unit heads will also determine which examinations or alternative assessments will be held online, or will require in-campus conduct once classes resume.

ADVISORYIn view of the enhanced community quarantine, we advise all Thomasians to heed the government’s mandate to…

University of Santo Tomasさんの投稿 2020年3月20日金曜日

Preliminary and final examinations may still be be integrated depending on the academic units “provided that there were enough student assessments aside from final examinations.” Students must also be informed of the changes in the grading system of affected courses.

The Office of the Vice-Rector for Research and Innovation also suspended all in-campus and off-campus research data gathering, as well as research-related local and international travels. Researchers were advised to do alternative activities.

Meanwhile, the schedule of moving-up ceremonies and commencement exercises will be determined once classes resume and academic calendar has been finalized.

Last March 13, the Office of the Secretary-General suspended the online classes from March 13-14 to give way for personal and family concerns.

Online classes from March 17 to 21 were also cancelled to “allow faculty members and students to attend to personal and family concerns,” “give faculty members time to revisit their course plans,” and “allow students to attend to pending tasks and submissions that were given in the past week.”

President Rodrigo Duterte placed the National Capital Region on a community quarantine from March 15 to April 14, with regular class suspensions in the region extended until April 14.

The code alert system for COVID-19 was raised to code red alert sub-level 2 which indicates evidence of community transmission.

All land, domestic air, and domestic water transportation to and from Metro Manila were barred, and only workers coming from nearby provinces were allowed to enter Metro Manila. Mass gatherings were also prohibited.

As of March 20, the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country is now at 230, with 18 fatalities.

On support staff, faculty evaluation, and admission process

Work for all staff shall “remain suspended until further notice” including skeletal workforce arrangement. Only selected on-site workers were allowed to perform work, according to the University’s Human Resource Department memorandum. 

Social distancing should also be observed during the work and all staff are “enjoined to observe work from home arrangement […] to maintain productivity.”

University admission activities for A.Y. 2020-2021 (reservation, confirmation, and enrollment) shall be scheduled once the classes resume. 

Academic units shall also coordinate with the Office of Admissions “to release the appropriate announcements to their respective applicants”.

Meanwhile, the faculty competence evaluation for the second semester will be scheduled once classes resume. It was encouraged “to provide qualitative comments” in the faculty evaluation to highlight their strengths, and help them [address] areas of improvement amid the regular class disruptions. A. Basa with report from J. A. Pangilinan

Comments

Continue Reading

Trending