A city college?
OFF TANGENT - Aven Piramide (The Freeman) - July 11, 2019 - 12:00am

Let me start with my own feeling. Mayor Labella humored me with his discourse on the establishment of a city college. I could not suppress my smile. Even as he used conciliatory language, perhaps designed not to offend the past administrations, the mayor drove the point home. The city needs to establish a city college to answer the educational needs of his young constituency. This is vital. But, he could not hide his disappointment that other local government units beat our city in putting up such a school. I could feel the mayor’s embarrassment that the cities of Mandaue and Talisay and the towns of Consolacion and Cordova, supposedly with lower resources are operating a vigorous collegiate institution while our city has none. Indeed, i was happy that such an idea finds itself within his initial ten-point program.

My excitement upon hearing such a plan mixed with a degree of melancholy or sadness. Whatever my emotion was, I could not understand. I tried my best to stay on my seat unaffected by the gist of the mayor’s topic. But, deep in my heart, i wanted to bring to the mayor my own disappointment. About the year 2002, some seventeen years ago, my lady Carmen, then a member of the City Council, filed a proposed ordinance creating the Cebu City College. There was no Talisay City College yet. It was put up in 2004, as the first tertiary education run by a local government. Neither was there a Mandaue City College nor that of Consolacion and Cordova.

The ordinance proposed by Carmen was a product of her love for education. Drawing inspiration from her brand of public service, the lawyers in our firm helped her craft the measure. It was conceptualized to focus on blue collar education that would make entrepreneurs out of the expected graduates and workers needed by the industrial sector of our economy. The curriculum design was the kind of courses not included in the list of offerings given by private universities and colleges. That was one reason the association of universities and colleges endorsed its creation favorably.

 Mayor Labella’s mention of creating a city council saddened me. I was reminded that Carmen belonged to the political minority in the city council. Her proposal to create the city college was opposed by the dominant members bearing the coat of arms of the BOPK. I sadly recall that the majority councilors did not even read it. They voted against it, not because of any imagined flaw in its concept but simply because she was not BOPK. Now that the mayor has some control of the majority in the city council, his idea of creating the city college has the chance of succeeding. To make the process faster, the councilors can study the draft of my lady.

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