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Maap wins second prize in Higher Education Institutions Internationalisation Award


The First Philippine HEIs Internationalisation Award highlights the importance of universities’ and colleges’ transnational and transcultural dimensions in expanding the quality of education within and beyond national borders. This inspires their community to adapt and compete on the regional and global stage

The Maritime Academy of Asia and the Pacific (MAAP) won the second prize at the recently concluded First Philippine Higher Educational Institutions (HEIs) Internationalisation Award.

MAAP’s partnership with Constanta Maritime University in Romania through their “Gender and Equality Cultural Awareness in Maritime Education and Training” (GECAMET) coupled with the “Sustainable Development Goals in Maritime Education and Training (SDiMet)” propelled the AMOSUP-run, Mariveles-based academy in getting this award.

Organised and spearheaded by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) in collaboration with UP Open University (UPOU), the first prize for the Philippines HEI Internationalisation Award went to Philippine Normal University and the third place to St Paul University (Cagayan).

MAAP, along with 17 HEIs, initially qualified amongst the finalists out of the 44 aspirants for the award on 12th May 2021. There are 2,300 HEIs (not included are the satellite campuses nationwide). And MAAP was the only maritime school that made it out of 17 awardees.

During the virtual awarding ceremonies at an hour-long coverage on 19th May via Zoom and Facebook live – emceed by UPOU’s Dr Imee Martinez and Dr Wendell Capili –MAAP was proclaimed the 2nd place winner.

CHED Commissioner, Dr Aldrin Arenas Darilag, praised the Academy for the award, saying: “Our country’s pride in the maritime programme promotes exemplary gender sensitive academic programmes giving equal opportunities for women in the field, which is traditionally for men.”

He said, MAAP internationalised its inspired designed-curriculum in terms of inclusivity, supporting responsiveness and relevance to SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals),” which MAAP signed with Constanta Maritime University (CMU) in Romania in connection with the issue of gender equality and cultural awareness.

Dr. Cristina Dragomir led CMU’s GECAMET project and Dr. Michael Ekow Manuel headed the SDiMET initiative, which are both funded by IAMU (International Association of Maritime Universities) and Nippon Foundation, with MAAP External Relations Director, Dr Angelica Baylon as research partner.

Dr Baylon, who represented MAAP in behalf of its president Vice Admiral Eduardo Ma R Santos (AFP, Ret) during the award ceremonies, stressed that: “Being the first [to be held] in the Philippines, the award made history for IAMU in having its members such as MAAP, CMU and World Maritime University (WMU) in Sweden getting collaborated for this internationalisation award.”

Dr Baylon extended their gratitude to CMU President, Dr Cornel Panait and WMU President, Dr Cleopatra Doumbia-Henry for their support.

The Philippine HEIs Internationalisation Award is meant to give due recognition to local institutions that courageously and passionately treaded through uncharted waters in education. It also highlights the importance of HEIs transnational and transcultural dimensions in expanding the quality of education within and beyond national borders by inspiring its community to adapt and compete on the regional and global stage.

UPOU Chancellor, Dr Melinda DP Bandelaria, said the internationalisation awardees were evaluated using the following criteria: innovativeness and creativity, impact, responsiveness, inclusivity and sustainability.

She noted that over the past five years, several HEIs developed and implemented projects towards the internationalisation of their institutions. Thus, Dr Bandelaria continued, “improving the quality of education they offer and nurturing the learners and graduates who can adapt and compete to the fast and changing demands of workforce at both regional and global environment.”

CHED Chairman, Prospero ‘Popoy’ de Vera III, underscored the pandemic that made it difficult to implement internationalisation efforts but schools, universities and colleges have continued to strengthen their links with universities and institutions abroad.

“Internationalisation is one of the major components in the construction of quality education. We believe that much creativity and innovativeness go into the design of internationalisation initiatives,” he said.

De Vera asserted that this award hopes to “inspire our schools, colleges, and university administrators and our fellow educators to continue improving and innovating in their internationalisation programmes as we continue to pedal our way toward a higher education system beyond this pandemic.”

Other awardees include Aklan State University, Ateneo de Davao, Ateneo de Manila University, Cebu Technological University, Central Bicol State University of Agriculture, Central Luzon State University, Capiz State University, Iloilo Science and Technology University, Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology, Our Lady of Fatima University, St. Louis University, Samar State University, San Pedro College and UP Manila-College of Public Health.

The five eminent members of the Board of Judges include: UPOU Chancellor Dr. Melinda DP Bandalaria (Chair), CHED Technical Panel Chair for Transnational and Distance Education Prof Grace Javier Alfonso (Co-Chair), SEAMEO Director of Bangkok Thailand Dr Ethel Agnes P Valenzuela (Member), CHED Consultant on Internationalisation Dr Carolina S Guina (Member) and Section Chief of EISD-UNESCO Dr Libing Wang (Member). SF