The 33rd Foundation Anniversary of Mariner’s Polytechnic Colleges Foundation (MPCF-Legazpi at Rawis) was celebrated August 3 to 4 with visionary seal and pragmatic goals.
The shift was ushered in by Ms. Merle Jimenez-San Pedro, the new president of MPCF. She issued a 10-Point Agenda “focused on meeting all the challenges to improve on the quality of education and training that we provide to the Bicolanos.”
In 33 years, MPCF has graduated about 40,000 who are now family assets and influencers of communities they hail from — a basic value and solid advocacy enshrined in MPCF by the founder, Jaime C. Jimenez, Sr.
On her own.
Ms. San Pedro replaced as president Commo. Dante La Jimenez who was appointed Chairman of the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC); president of Mariners Polytechnic Training Center (MPTC), Women in Maritime Asia (WIMA-Asia), Movement for Maritime Philippines (MMP).
She is also an officer of the Association of Maritime Institutions (PAMI), Association of Maritime Training Centers (PAMTCI), Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC).
MPCF-Canaman and MPC-Naga President Marilissa Jimenez-Ampuan issued the challenge to “move forward with your accreditation.” The doctor tied this up with the Anniversary theme of “Raising the Bar for Maritime and Business Education and Training through Innovation.”
Ms. Ampuan was referring to the accreditation of two programs, Marine Engineering and Marine Transportation, by the Phil Association of Colleges and Universities Commission on Accreditation (PACUCOA). By next semester, three more are planned, two on Tourism Management and one for Hospitality Management.
(She even shared the quest of excellence is part of her love story with then Engr. Alfredo Ampuan, Dean of the Academics at MPFC-Legazpi. For her “sweet yes,” the dean must do an outstanding job. It seems he did for they marry.
He was later appointed RTC Judge and honored as one of the best in the Metro Manila circuit.)
The day offered a bevy of activities: foot parade, marching band, SHS mass demonstration, sports competitions (swimming and basketball), storytelling for kids on protection of the marine environment; contests on mural arts, quiz bee, maritime skills, student project proposals, music and dance, extemporaneous speech.
The Women in Maritime-Bikol initiated a round-table-discussion launching the open library project, followed by dinner with guests at the Jaime and Eliza Hall of the Mariner’s Pavilion.
Senior government officials came from the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd), Departments of Education (DepEd) and Tourism (DoT), Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and the uniformed services (Coast Guard, Police and Navy).
Private sector executives include those from banks, hotels and travel agencies.
All feasted on winning dishes by culinary arts students.
The second day featured the Alumni Color of Fun from the Embarcadero to the entrance to the Annex, zumba dance session at the JCJ Gymnasium and a Roman Catholic thanksgiving Mass.
New facilities were blessed and unveiled: I Love MPCF-Legazpi signage, college student lounge at the main campus. Faculty, staff and student leaders enjoyed the traditional joint lunch with video music, Ms. San Pedro leading the Happy Birthday song for Commo. D. Jimenez.
Service awards were given to personnel logging 5-10-15-30 years of service.
Ms. San Pedro touched hearts when she acknowledged “… the great effort, the great contribution of our faceless faculty and employees…This is their night.”
Some awardees exhibited dance numbers, kids from Buhatan, Sto. Domingo, Albay (adopted community of MPCF-Legazpi). There were songs from SHS College students, faculty and staff.
Board Chairman Gabriel Jimenez (MPCF-Legazpi president in 1992) recalled with pride that graduates of MPCF are overseas, holding responsible posts. For one, the good doctor remembers meeting those in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, knowing thousands more are in seafaring, hospitality, government, the world!
To keep that MPCF imprimatur, the Alumni Path of Honor was re-launched with Ms. Rocel Laynesa as Coordinator.
Four classrooms were named after corporate partners. In simple ceremony, doors were opened and plaques were installed on each:
- Marlow Navigation Phils. by Capt. Leopoldo Tenorio, CEO-Operations of Marlow Navigation Philippines;
- Maine Marine by Mr. Akihiro Kashiwagi, president, Misuga Kaiun Management Services and GM of Misuga Kaiun-Phil.;
- Tsakos by Leodan Nagrampa, GM; and
- Chelsea Shipping by Capt. Job Bienvenido Espares, Crewing Manager, Chelsea Marine Manpower Resources
The rooms are dedicated to MPCF partners, recognizing their invaluable contributions to growth and development, symbols of fruitful partnership nurtured over the years.
Mr. Kashiwagi was visibly touched, “…imagine that the road over the year have been bitter sweet, happy moment in different times. Yet, … you have grown as an institution and as a group of company… Misuga Group intends to continue the same path with you.”
Capt. Tenorio spoke in Pilipino, attesting to that solid partnership; for one, in deference to Founder Jimenez, his guide and professor at FEATI. He announced a massive crew recruitment for his additional 24 bulk carriers (low at superbulk 75k gross tons and high at capesize 100k gross tons, big as an island). From 58 vessels in 1989, he now has a fleet of 1,182 vessels.
An educator, civic leader and gender-equality advocate, Ms. San Pedro has bases covered with her 10-Point Agenda:
- Holistic and dynamic academic environment
- Good governance and inclusive leadership
- Vibrant student life and welfare programs
- Commitment to personnel development
- Active engagement in research and extension
- Develop senior high school department
- Upgrade academic and other campus facilities
- Vigorous campaign on GAD advocacies (generalized anxiety disorder)
- Harmonize education and training systems
- Improve branding and sustain partnerships
Based on RA 10121 (Disaster Risk Reduction Management), NSTP Coordinator and PCGA Capt. Steven James Dino presented to Ms. San Pedro a disaster contingency plan with five operating
teams: medical, search and rescue, firefighting, logistics and structural safety security, crowd control and communication.
On the underbelly of this Mariners Disaster Risk Reduction Management Group (MDRRMG) and within the 10-Point Agenda are three major focus:
* Training, enhancement and capability building
* Partnership with government/NGO disaster response agencies
* Outreach to communities.