Saturday, February 15, 2014

Ecija’s oldest private university turns 68

CABANATUAN CITY – Nueva Ecija’s first-ever private university has turned 68th, surviving through roller-coaster years, including a turbulent past year which saw a sitting president taking an indefinite leave of absence amid graft allegations.
          The Methodist-run Wesleyan University of the Philippines observed its 68th founding anniversary at its Main Campus along Mabini Extension through a six-day festivity which kicked off last February 10 with a thanksgiving and worship service, motorcade, film showing and the opening of college booths and tiangge.
          WUP president Pacifico Aniag said this year’s anniversary rites, which have as its theme : “Sustaining Excellence at 68,” were also marked by medical and dental mission, blood-letting, the “my teacher and I got talent” competitions, jingle and digital photography competitions, the search for Mr. and Miss Wesleyan 2014, beach volleyball tournament, sportsfest, the Run for Kids 2014 fun run and the Grand Alumni homecoming Saturday.
          Aniag, a former three-term provincial board member of Bulacan, said this year’s festivities represent a high-water mark for the university which has been offering high-quality education for the past 68 years.
He said WUP has become synonymous with lofty academic standards, broad course offerings, highly competent faculty and personnel, wide range of facilities and excellent record of community service.
          Described as a non-stock, non-profit, Methodist-related but non-sectarian institution, WUP started in 1946 as the Philippine Wesleyan College (PWC) after it was founded by a group of Methodist religious and lay persons who saw the need to provide Novo Ecijanos the opportunity to receive college education without going to Manila.
          In 1978, it was granted university status and renamed WUP, in the process becoming the first private university in the province in recognition of its role as a credible institution of higher learning in the province.
          In 2009, WUP was given a five-year autonomous status by the Commission on Higher Education (Ched), thus, becoming the first and only autonomous private university in the province. With the accolade, WUP also joined the elite list of best private universities in the country.
The festivities also came at a time when the university was on a transition from a potential leadership crisis owing to a power struggle involving factions loyal to his predecessor and the Board of Trustees (BOT).
          Aniag’s predecessor was facing corruption allegations and was given a graceful exit by the BOT by allowing him to go on an indefinite leave. The Board later named Aniag as new president to steer the school to new heights.
          Aniag said the school has gone a long way, with its student population now at 8,200. Of these, some 5,700 are college students while 1,500 are primary and secondary students. It also has 1,000 students at its extension campus in Maria Aurora, Aurora.
          Aniag said the students from the Cushman campus have been availing of the school’s state-of-the-art facilities that include the university hospital, library, auditorium and chapel, computer center, radio station, function hall, food court, the Wesley Park and Plaza Acacia among others.   
          WUP has eight colleges offering 17 baccalaureate degrees. The colleges are arts and sciences, business and accountancy, education, engineering, computer studies, criminal justice education, hotel restaurant and institution management and nursing and allied medical sciences.
          These colleges offer bachelor of science degrees in arts, accountancy, accounting technology, business administration, secondary education, elementary education, social work, electronics engineering, computer engineering, information technology, criminology, hotel and restaurant management, tourism management, nursing, physical therapy, medical technology and radiation technology.
          It also hands over a diploma for midwifery courses.
          For its graduate school, WUP has a doctorate degree in education and business administration and masteral degrees in education, sociology, business administration, nursing and criminal justice education. – Manny Galvez 

Octogenarian murder witness murdered on Valentine’s Day in NE

CABANATUAN CITY, Nueva Ecija – An octogenarian witness in a murder case 18 years ago was shot dead right on Valentine’s Day by a long assassin in Gabaldon, Nueva Ecija, three days before he was to take the witness stand against an accused in the case.
          Senior Superintendent Crizaldo Nieves, provincial police director, identified the victim as Alfredo Manawis, 82, of Purok Sampaguita, Barangay Calabasa, Gabaldon.
          The killing was perpetrated at around 12:30 pm Friday when Manawis, a widower, was watching television inside his house.
          Senior Inspector Rodolfo Racho, Gabaldon police chief, said the suspect shot him point-blank in the head in an unknown firearm then fled towards the south direction in nearby Dingalan, Aurora aboard an unlicensed black Mio Yamaha motorcycle.
          Racho said the gunman was described as 5’ 8” in height, medium built, wearing long sleeves, maong pants and a ball cap.
Manawis was rushed to the Gabaldon Community Hospital but was pronounced dead on arrival.
Racho said the killing may have been triggered by the murder case involving a certain Apolinario Lazaro who was shot dead on February 20,1996. Lazaro’s nephew Orlando Lazaro Jr. was tagged for the killing which motive was reportedly due to a land dispute.
Orlando was later detained at the provincial jail in Barangay Caalibangbangan this city in connection with the crime.
SP01 Arnold B Barrogo, officer-on-case,  said Manawis is a witness in Apolinario’s killing. He said Manawis was to take the witness stand on Monday to testify  against Orlando.
He added that Orlando was also being linked to the September 20,2012 killing of Apolinario’s brother Feliciano. – Manny Galvez

Ecija fun run for victims of sex abuse, ‘Yolanda’ lures 1,000 runners

CABANATUAN CITY, Nueva Ecija – A fun run organized by the students’ organization of the Wesleyan University of the Philippines to raise funds for victims of sexual abuse and those displaced by typhoon “Yolanda” kicked off before dawn here yesterday, participated in by 1,000 runners.
Dubbed “Run for Kids 2014,” the event started at 4 am at Plaza Acacia inside the Cushman Campus of the WUP - Nueva Ecija’s oldest private university - along Mabini Extension here.
The run-for-a-cause activity was organized by the university’s supreme student council (SSC) led by its president Juan Rolando Dizon, the event’s overall chairman and council vice president and co-project head Amira Panginen.
Ian Javier, council secretary and project head, said the 1,000 participants came from all walks of life, the youngest of whom was a seven-year-old kid. The event was categorized into three, one involving a three-kilometer run, another for five kilometers and the third for a distance of 10 kilometers.
The 5km run was for runners 12 years and above while the 10kkm for adults. The first placer stands to receive P2,000 plus medal, the second placer P1,500 and the third P1,000.
Emmanuel Cleto, SSC adviser, said they expect the fun run to be a resounding success since all the jerseys were almost sold out three days before the actual event.
 Javier said they expect to raise P300,000 from the three events, proceeds of which will go to victims of sexual abuses at the Home for Girls in Palayan City and those affected by Yolanda in Tacloban City.
He said that last year, a similar fun run benefited 30 cancer-stricken children where they were able to procure machine for bone marrow transplant.
The sponsors for the fun run were such firms as SaveMore, Robinson’s, Smart Communications, Jollibee, Kia, BanKo, Towncall, Chevrolet, Peugot, Red Logo, Philippine National Police, Cabanatuan Electric Corp., Paulino J. Garcia Memorial Research and Medical Center (PJGMRMC), BDO, Alalay sa Kaunlaran, Inc. (ASKI), Cakeland, NE Pacific, Coffee La Tea, Vicentico’s, 14M, Toyota, Mercury Drug, Manson Drug, M Lhuillier, Cebuana Lhuillier, Gloria Jeans Coffee, Slice & Dice, Blue Copy, Medlinks and Maybank. – Manny Galvez 


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