1st UP-SUC Summit to launch four programs for SUC engagement

| Written by Arlyn VCD Palisoc Romualdo

On September 15, four University programs aimed at promoting engagement between UP and other Philippine state universities and colleges (SUCs) will be launched during Pagtutulay, Pagtutuloy: Strengthening Partnerships in Philippine Public Higher Education to be held in the Grand Ballroom of Dusit Thani, Davao City.

The summit is a gathering of leaders of Philippine state universities and colleges (SUCs), Commission on Higher Education (CHED) officials, and interested stakeholders from Congress and private higher education institutions, and dovetails the September 14 investiture ceremony of 22nd UP President Angelo A. Jimenez. It was his cognizance of UP鈥檚 public service mandate as indicated in RA 9500 or the UP Charter that led to this exploration of and strengthening of inter-SUC engagement and partnerships. For Jimenez, engagement and partnerships are imperatives for knowledge co-creation, innovation, research, and public service towards national development.

The four programs are: the UP Data Commons; Philippines Massive Open Online Courses (PHMOOCs); TVUP programs; and the UP Archipelagic and Ocean Virtual University (UPAOVU).

The UP Data Commons, inaugurated in 2021, is a world class high performance computing and storage facility that includes the necessary hardware and software resources, located at the UP Diliman College of Science. Its launch during the summit opens this UP resource to SUC partnerships in pursuit of innovative research, such as those on artificial intelligence and big data. Participants to the Summit will be treated to a demonstration of the various ways SUCs can use this resource for their constituents. It has three petabytes of storage, with plans to increase it to seven, and connectivity speeds that allow data transfer in milliseconds.

PHMOOCs is a new platform designed to foster universal access to quality education, promote lifeline learning, and enhance collaboration among higher education institutions in the country. It promotes knowledge sharing, collaborative course development and implementation, research partnerships, and teaching methods and technology use innovations. It is envisioned to widen education opportunities by leveraging technology to provide accessible, inclusive, and high-quality courses, and to address the diverse needs of learners, wherever they may be. The UP Open University, which began offering MOOCS in 2013, leads this initiative that also aims to link up with MOOCs platforms in other countries.

TVUP, the UP-owned and operated internet television network, was launched in 2016 and expanded its reach through Cignal TV Channel 101 in 2022. Its debut in Pagtutulay, Pagtutuloy intensifies its commitment to the production of open educational resources in the Philippines by inviting collaborations in knowledge production through the creation of inter-university programs. TVUP will eventually evolve to become a training facility for performance and production.

The UPAOVU represents the country鈥檚 aspiration of becoming an economically prosperous and environmentally sustainable archipelagic nation. Spurred by the development of the blue economy that ties with archipelagic and ocean studies work done by UP faculty and researchers over many decades, the UPAOVU will become the hub of research and teaching that brings together the strengths of various SUCs in marine biology, oceanography, fisheries, and other allied disciplines. The end goal is to become invaluable resources, partners, and enablers of the blue economy; leading in the formulation of policies and programs that are coherent, inclusive, and sustainable.