New Zealand (NZ) Ambassador Hon. Peter Kell visited the University of Southeastern Philippines (USeP) for a courtesy call to the University President, Dr. Lourdes C. Generalao, and spearheaded an Information Sharing about the Manaaki Scholarship Programme at the College of Information and Computing Audio Visual Room (CIC-AVR).
Dr. Generalao shared with the Ambassador the extension services of the University, including Pamulaan Center for Indigenous Peoples (IPs) Education, College Education Behind Bars (CEBB), and the recently launched Malabog Extension Campus wherein most of the students are members of IP groups.
“Internationalization is one of the most important endeavors in education as it is a means to continuously ensure the quality education that academic institutions offer,” said Dr. Generalao during her welcome remarks in the second part of the said engagement. “It goes beyond merely allowing us to appreciate the different culture of our different international counterparts. It also provides the opportunity for us to comprehend, welcome, and incorporate many cultures to your educational process”.
Hon. Kell, in his speech, also shared the meaning of ‘Manaaki’ as a Maori word for caring, giving, and hospitality. He also shared the status of the partnership between the country and New Zealand, stating that the Philippines and New Zealand have been good partners and friends.
With this, the NZ Embassy- Manila discussed the scholarship opportunities they are offering to every Mindanaoan, with emphasis to the members of the indigenous peoples and Moro groups.
“It is our commitment to help those groups/communities that are underrepresented and marginalized in the development of the Philippines. I’m talking about the IP communities and Moros. We focus more in supporting those communities to meet their aspirations, to grow their ability and capability”, emphasized Hon. Kell on making opportunities accessible to IPs and Moros. “We deliberately make sure that the opportunity to study in New Zealand is truly open to those community (referring to IPs and Moros).
The event was also attended by various institutions of higher learning in Mindanao including Bukidnon State University (BukSU), Holy Cross College of Davao (HCDC), Mindanao State University (MSU) -Marawi, Davao del Sur State College (DSSC), Jose Maria College Foundation, Inc., University of the Immaculate Concepcion (UIC), Brokenshire College-Davao, and Davao Oriental State University (DOrSU).