The leadership of President Mary Jocelyn V. Battung in her quest to advance the level of international collaboration with foreign academic institutions has now brought J.H. Cerilles State College on the global scene.
Along with three highly advanced tertiary academic institution in the Philippines, the University of the Philippines, Benguet State University, Bicol State University and the young yet competitive J.H. Cerilles State College of Zamboanga del Sur was able to represent the country to the 1st SEAMEO RIHED-JANU Seminar and Study Visit Programme to Japan last June 23-29, 2019 at Kansai Region, Japan.
The Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization Regional Centre for Higher Education and Development (SEAMEO RIHED) is the Centre specializing in higher education and development. Its main activities include training, research, and information dissemination with special focus on fostering efficiency and effectiveness of higher education policy and planning, management, and administration in SEAMEO Member Countries. While the Japan Association of National Universities (JANU) aims to contribute to promoting national university cooperation and improving standards of higher education and academic research in Japan.
With this study visit to Japan, Dr. Battung has opened the gateways for partnerships with other international academic institutions, especially with Japanese universities, which are leaders in technology innovation, research and education. They are now open for collaboration in interdisciplinary/trans-disciplinary research studies and projects; send faculty for graduate studies; and establish academic linkages with the following Japanese leading universities: Osaka University-JHCSC can collaborate in the areas of Environmental Science, Agriculture and Biology. Kyoto University – Areas of interest were JHCSC can collaborate: Education (Educational Studies), Law (Legal and Political Studies), Science (Mathematics and Mathematical Sciences, Chemistry, and Biological Sciences), Agriculture (Agronomy and Horticultural Science, Forest and Biomaterials Science, Applied Life Sciences, Environmental Science and Technology and Food Science and Biotechnology) Global Environmental Studies (Environmental Management) and Government (Public Policy). Kobe University- Areas of Agricultural Science ( Animal Science and Plan Science), Law (Political Science – Political Theory, International Policy Analysis, Analysis of Contemporary Politics), Science (Mathematics – Applied Mathematics, Algebra and Geometry, Chemistry – Physical Chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry and Organic Chemistry, Biology– Biodiversity and Developmental Biology). Ritsumeikan University- Areas of interests: Law, Life Sciences, Policy Science and Public Policy). And Kansai University- Areas of interests: Law and Politics and Informatics.
Aside from visiting and learning in-depth insights into the Japanese higher education and research landscape, President Battung with other senior executives and administrators of Southeast Asian higher education institutions visited various institutions and industries, namely, Disaster Reduction and Human Renovation Institution, Daikin Technology and Innovation Center and NEC Innovation World Kansai Showroom for Industry-University/State College Partnership.
In studying Japanese history and culture, Dr. Battung visited The Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake Memorial Museum which showcases the experiences and lessons of the past disaster and also provided information and resources for building a disaster resilient society through exhibits, films and stories told by disaster survivors.
In addition, she also visited the 17th century old Osaka Castle which is a historical landmark in the middle of a modern urban cityscape of Osaka. And to include Nijo Castle which has the reputation of being the best surviving castle palace architecture of Japan’s Feudal Era.
The Seminar and Study Visit not only provided the respective participants with an informative and interactive platform in discussing the roles as well as contributions of higher learning institutions towards sustainable development, but also the exclusive opportunity for the institutions to advance cooperation with Japanese counterparts.
Dr. Battung believes that collaboration among Southeast Asian Higher Education Institutions and Japanese counterparts though Enhancing Regional Cooperation and Development is crucial for scientific research. In seeking to work with the best of their peers and to gain access to complementary resources, equipment and knowledge, researchers fundamentally enrich the quality and improve the efficiency of their work.