Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Entrepreneurial Farmer

by Ambrosio R. Villorente

Led by its president, Mr. Rey C. Villaruel, the Aklan State University (main) Alumni Association, Inc., Banga, Aklan celebrated their Grand Alumni Homecoming on April 25, 2015. This was participated by graduates of Capiz Farm School, Banga Rural High School, Aklan Agricultural College, Aklan State College of Agriculture and now Aklan State University.

ASU Banga, started as Capiz Farm School in 1917. It was converted to Banga Rural High School in 1928, then converted to Aklan Agricultural College in 1963 designed to offer and confer bachelor’s degrees in Agriculture. In view of the increasing demand in Agricultural education and the urgent need to accelerate farm production in Aklan. AAC was again transformed to Aklan State College of Agriculture in 1992.

In order to provide higher education to students who pursue doctoral degrees in various disciplines, ASCA was converted to Aklan State University on April 4, 2001 by virtue of Republic Act 4055, a consolidated version of House Bill 1548 authored by Cong. Allen S. Quimpo and Senate Bill 2236.

With RA 4055, it integrated ASU with: 1. Roxas Memorial College of Arts and Trade in Kalibo, 2. Aklan National College of Fisheries in New Washington, 3. Northern Panay Teachers College in Makato, and 4. Western Aklan Polytechnic College in Ibajay.

Is the ASU in five (5) Campuses responding successfully to their respective mandates? ASU Banga is yet to graduate progressive farmers. Trades in farm products and farm inputs are being handled by others rather than graduates of agriculture. A big and modern poultry farm is owned and managed by a chemical engineer, former Governor Carlito S. Marquez in Mangan, Banga.

In 2013, some 1.4 million tourists ate four (4) percent of the vegetables produced in Aklan, seven (7) of the fruits produced in Aklan; and 38 percent of the fishes caught/produced in Aklan. This is a big challenge for ASU to educate future farmers to handle agricultural enterprises in Aklan and produce more food for the Aklanons and their visitors. ASU is a flag bearer of agricultural colleges, yet it has not produced progressive farmers and fishermen.

This can only be accomplished if ASU Banga will concentrate on its mandate and give the least priority to non agricultural education like nursing and criminology.

ASU New Washington will be doing a good job if it concentrates on fishery production, conservation and development. It is well advised if Criminology and Hotel and Tourism courses are listed the least priority and give more emphasis on fisheries and allied courses such as fish processing.

Grand Alumni

Anyway, the Grand Alumni Homecoming was held on April 25, 2015 with the theme: “Sustaining Development Transformation Through The Alumni”.

Part I of the program was held in the ASU Amphi Theater on Saturday afternoon. After the registration. Ms. Daylinda R. Rigodon acknowledged those present. Retrospections were given by Ms. Emma Masigon-Ingalla, BRHS class 1955 representing Diamond Jubilarians; Mr. Renato I. Rasco, class 1965 – Golden Jubilarians, Ms. Marilou Relingo-Dela Cruz, class 1990 – silvery thoughts, and Ms. Mary Ann Acifar-Ramos, 1985, pearly reflections. Mr. Rey C. Villaruel, president presented his accomplishment reports and future alumni projects. ASU President, Dr. Danilo E. Abayon delivered his message to the alumni.

Thanksgiving mass was celebrated for the alumni at Banga Parish Church. After the holy mass, torch parade around the Poblacion, Banga followed which ended at Banga Cultural & Sports Complex for Part II of the homecoming was held. ASU Alumni President Rey C. Villaruel gave the opening remarks after the doxology by Prof. Yuhum P. Ruiz.

Dr. Marivel S. Villorente, BSA class 1985 was unable to attend the Alumni who should have introduced the guest speaker, Dr. Christy B. Laurente. She is the Supervising Education Program Specialist, CHED, Region VI, Iloilo City. Dr. Laurente is one of the three (3) outstanding ASU alumni 2015. She graduated with the degree, Dr. of Philosophy in Education at ASU. 

The other two (2) outstanding alumni of 2015 are Mr. Roberto D. Teodosio and Mr. Jeffrey A. Delos Reyes who graduated with the degree Bachelor of Science in Agriculture in 1978. He is the present Provincial Manager, Philippine Coconut Development Authority in Capiz.

Teodosio completed his secondary education course at AAC in 1956. He was commended for his exemplary services and contribution as a civic leader and volunteer in various non-governmental organizations and institutions.

The outstanding Alumni trophies were awarded by Dr. Ambrosio R. Villorente – chair, committee on awards with Dr. Danilo E. Abayon, and Mr. Rey C. Villaruel- president. 

The Award Ceremonies over, Coronation Ceremonies for Ms. Alumni 2015 followed with Ms. Rufina Rigodon-Villaroman, HS Class 1964. Banga Mayor Erlinda Maming was the coronation speaker. She crowned Ms. Alumni 2015.

Dr. Michael T. Ibisate – Director, Alumni and Public Relations closed the award ceremonies with his closing message. Part III which is “Party Till You Drop” followed until the wee hours of the morning. /MP

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