TAGAYTAY CITY, Cavite—As part of the efforts to improve institutional linkages of government agencies for better governance and sustainability of rural situation, the scholarship on Masters in Public Management, Major in Rural Development (MPM-RD) was granted to another batch of students.
A total of 114 government employees engaged in rural development work from the Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), and the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) were part of this fourth and latest leg of the scholarship program.
The scholars completed the 42 units of academic requirements in a span of 18 months. Through a blended learning approach, a combination of traditional face-to-face classroom interaction with online learning, they were guided by professors from the Development Academy of the Philippines (DAP), University of the Philippines Diliman, Ateneo de Manila University-Ateneo School of Government, and Xavier University in Cagayan de Oro City.
Mc. Bien Saint Garcia of the DA–Office of the Secretary attained the highest Grade Point Average among the Batch 4 scholars and delivered the class address; while the Leadership Award was given to Melba Ariño of DENR. Furthermore, the best Rural Development Action Plan and Project was awarded to Ariño and her fellow group members, Dennis Ariño (DENR) and Marlito Cabuños (DA). Their project is a case study in Mapanas, Northern Samar which aimed to improve the well-being of coastal communities through coastal ecosystem management.
Meanwhile, MPM Alumnus Dr. Nicamil Sanchez led the Public Manager’s Oath and MPM-RD Batch 1 Alumna Hazel Ann Alforja led the Alumni Association Oathtaking.
More than 70 of the scholars came from the DA, where 19 are from the ATI. ATI’s Information Systems Researcher III, Joeven Calasagsag shared, “Apart from the formal academic concepts of leadership, management, and rural development that we learned, what mattered most was the collaboration, camaraderie, and bond that were developed during this learning journey. It was not just a personal trip, it was an expedition which carried the aspirations and ideals of our respective clients. It reminded us about our beneficiaries who strive to improve their lives through the services and interventions that we, the scholars of the government, will deliver to them.”
DA Undersecretary for Operations Ariel Cayanan, DENR Assistant Secretary Jesus Enrico Moises Salazar, and ATI Director Alfredo Aton graced the event. Also present were ATI Regional Training Center (RTC) directors Rogelio Evangelista, Pat Andrew Barrientos, Dr. Eden Bautista, and Dr. Carolyn Daquio.
The MPM-RD Batch 4 Commencement Exercises was held at the DAP Conference Center on December 17, 2018.