Benguet State University, represented by President Felipe Salaing Comila, and the Department of Education–Cordillera Administrative Region (DepEd-CAR), represented by Regional Director Estela P. Leon-Cariño, signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) in support of the DepEd-CAR’s project, Salaknib Tan Namnama (STN) at the RDC Hall, Benguet State University last November 3, 2022.
Salaknib Tan Namnama is an Ibaloi phrase that means Saving or Protecting and Giving Hope, which aims to raise hope and restore the self-worth of learners who had undesirable histories brought about by the troubling experience of learners.
According to DepEd-CAR, the project was launched on December 3, 2020 to fulfill the objectives of the DepEd Indigenous Peoples Education Program and the Drop-Out Reduction Program. The project also intends to facilitate support to learners in marginalized, hard-to-reach, and vulnerable situations until they complete tertiary education.
“It’s always good to be an educator,” expressed Vice-President for Academic Affairs Dr. Samuel Salay Poliden as he thanked DepEd-CAR for choosing BSU as a partner for the project. He added that the project is one of the realizations of the BSU’s goal of expanding its campuses in Benguet, as it will accommodate more students.
As stated in the MOA, the DepEd-CAR will nominate and recommend learner-beneficiaries to BSU for enrollment, accommodation to scholarship programs, and as student assistants in BSU offices and programs that support the continuity of education of the learner-beneficiaries. Further, DepEd-CAR will supervise and monitor the educational performance of the learner-beneficiaries and support the BSU plans beneficial to learner-beneficiaries, especially in finishing their degrees. These provisions were agreed upon by BSU subject to its governing laws, rules, policies, and other pertinent laws such as the Data Privacy Act.
The MOA signing was witnessed by BSU officials, STN committee members, three learner-beneficiaries, and a parent representative.
Pres. Comila applauded RD Leon-Cariño for initiating the project and expressed support to the learner-beneficiaries. He also showed generosity by donating 15,000 pesos to the 15 learner-beneficiaries enrolled in the University.
RD Leon-Cariño thanked BSU for the partnership and expressed optimism despite the challenges they encountered with the project. “Hopefully this project will become a program and institutionalized… Thank you to BSU, and we hope this signing of the MOA will still be strengthened as we will be having more learners,” she said and hoped learner-beneficiaries continue their studies at the University.//EMB