Romblon State University secures P39-M CHED grant

Rachel Evangelista-Llorca - Philstar.com
Romblon State University secures P39-M CHED grant
Pieces of furniture and alcohol dispensers produced by the school factories which will be housed by the Research Center.

ROMBLON — Romblon State University (RSU) secured a funding from the Commission on Higher Education for three major projects worth P39 million as it gears forward for what RSU President Merian Catajay-Mani called the year of transformation.

The new RSU chief, upon assumption, made sure that previous unliquidated projects were settled before applying for CHED grants. It has been a decade since this education institution got CHED funding.

The CHED Institutional Development and Innovation Grants approved the P12 million worth RSU proposal for a research center mainly to cater IT, engineering and business students. From the CHED assistance for smart campuses development, another P25 million was allocated and a P2-million grant for the university’s land use development and infrastructure plan. 

Pioneering Research Center 

This is the first research center to be established in RSU called the Center for Innovative Learning and Enterprise Development at the Romblon State University or [email protected]

Before 2020 ended, Mani signed the memorandum of agreement between CHED and RSU to establish the research center which will house the existing woodworking and metalworking school factories and a fabrication laboratory and design studio.

According to Bilshan Servanez, RSU VP for research and lead proponent of [email protected], the research center with its state-of-the-art industry 4.0-ready equipment will provide fourth industrial revolution skills to RSU graduates. He also added that the center is hoped to produce “technopreneurs” and highly placed graduates from Romblon.

In an interview with RSU director for research Eddie Fetalvero, the research center will also serve as a clearing house for faculty and student researches on innovative learning and enterprise development as well as monitor funding for research projects.

“The challenge here is the sustainability of the center, that is why there is a need to house researchers to write for grant proposals that would ensure a 5 million yearly allocation, that is the annual budget requirement for a research and development unit to qualify as a research center, ” Fetalvero said.

“SUCs thrust today is to come up with products with market potential which will not end in the university but will also generate income and will allow inventions to get patented,” he said.

SMART ISLA: Integrated SMART Campus for Learning Advancements in an Island Education Setting 

As the country is placed in the state of national emergency due to COVID pandemic the education sector had to migrate to a non-contact learning environment to halt the spread of COVID 19.

Turning into a smart campus particularly in a province with slow internet connection and technologically challenged student population could be daunting but CHED’s 25 million grant approval to turn this to reality revived hope to more than 14,000 students of RSU all over the province. 

RSU smart campus properly dubbed as Smart Isla will provide reliable and continuous access to cost-effective and effective flexible learning and e-learning delivery, fast internet access and utilization of the proposed learning management system (LMS), learning information system (LIS) and campus area network (CAN) services.

Carlwin Dayagdag, project leader of Smart Isla said that this is a unique smart campus proposal because it will establish as self-reliant network infrastructure or a network operating center that monitors over all network status and users of the network resources.

It will also house the local servers of the proposed LMS and LIS and ensure that the network bandwidth is utilized only in the delivery of the university’s different online and CAN resources and services to its intended users. 

We are paying high internet fees due to multiple internet service subscriptions of the different offices, with our smart campus we will share single internet subscription and could establish our own instant messaging, VOIP and video conferencing system that will lessen internet connectivity dependence,” he said.

“Students’ remote learning set-up can shift to the online modality if there is an equitable connection infrastructure where everyone can access learning contents,” he added. 

Students and offices from the different RSU campuses can interconnect once Smart Isla rolls out. Access points through Wi-fi connection will be put up for learners with gadgets and for those who lack devices a learning hub in coordination with the local government will be provided.

RSU-Rise Project 

The Comprehensive Land Use and Development Plan for Romblon State University or Rise project has an allocated budget of P2 million as recently approved by CHED. This project is in accordance with the provisions of the RA 11392 or the act requiring the SUCs to prepare and implement a land use development and infrastructure plan that will serve as the basis for short, medium, and long-term land utilization and infrastructure development programs and projects of the university.

Part of the ten-point agenda of RSU is goal 4 which is to ensure more efficient resource generation and management. Under goal 4.2 is to implement infrastructure development, including the preparation of land use development and infrastructure plans for all campuses, rehabilitate academic buildings, and improve and develop infrastructure facilities. 

Engr. Raymond Jay Severo who will implement the Rise project mentioned that by August of this year a survey of existing facilities and buildings will be conducted and by the end of 2021 an updated site development plan will be in place.

“We will make sure that future and location of future projects will be incorporated in the updated site development. Projects will not be approved by CHED without the LUDIP especially those budgeted for 2021-2022,” Severo said.


Rachel Evangelista-Llorca is the head of the Communications Bureau of the Romblon State University.


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