Connecting People, Connecting Cultures, Connecting the World:
TUA- International Student Society Joins NCIS 2013
International Student Society – Trinity University of Asia – joins the 11th National Conference for International Students 2013 held at the School of Design and Arts Theater, De La Salle College of St. Benilde, Pablo Ocampo St. Manila. This year’s conference is co-sponsorship between the Philippine International Friendship Organization (PIFO) Inc. and De La Salle-College of St. Benilde.
The 3 day conference, themed “Connecting People, Connecting Cultures, Connecting the World,” were attended by administrators, international student organizations advisers and international student leaders from over 28 colleges and universities in the Philippines catering for international student community. This conference serves as a great opportunity to gather and share inputs and best practices among other colleges and universities and to be at par in providing a conducive and inclusive learning environment for international students.
The conference catered to several plenary discussions and workshop sessions. Dr. Isagani Cruz, President Manila Times College and also a columnist, Philippine Star, started the plenary talk and discussed about the context of building “connections” in the globalized world. He emphasized that the collegiate stage of student life is the perfect opportunity to reflect about what is happening to the world: poverty, hunger, climate change, and think of possible solutions to address this global issues. He encouraged every international student leader to make a mark and take the positive impact of globalization, accessing to the world social forum and build connections and relationship among each other.
Moreover, Mr. Michael Frank Alar, Project Manager of Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, a former international student himself highlighted that understanding connections in the context of “Relationship” is the key for Nation Building. He also cited that differences should be understood and appreciated as diversity, looking at differences as positive and an opportunity to learn and understand others. He also challenged everyone to use the thing that we do not know to seek for a deeper understanding. Fun games, solidarity socializations and workshops followed ever plenary and research discussions.
The 3rd day of the NCIS 2013 served as a celebration of cultural diversity as the program was hosted at Villa Escudero in San Pablo City Laguna. One of its highlights was the Philippine Experience Show that presented the country’s cultural legacy by showcasing a variety of Philippine Folk Dances and historic events in the Philippine Folk Culture. Moreover, international student delegates have enjoyed the AERA Memorial Museum, that houses one of the largest collections in the country. Their lunch were served on bamboo dining tables set in a few inches of crystalline running water from the falls, paddling a native bamboo raft on the still waters of the lake, exploring well landscaped grounds, watching different bird species, feet dipping at the pool and tour through the rural village with a carabao pulled sleigh.
The NCIS 2013 has served as an encouragement for colleges and universities to continuously commit in providing a well-rounded learning environment for foreign students and create a more responsive and inclusive student program development that caters to the special needs of the international student community. To date, Trinity University of Asia has been catering to a growing number of international students from various nationalities around the globe, as it envision itself to be a premiere Christian University in Asia and the Pacific transforming a community of learners as leaders towards a humane society.