News and Announcements
by Mark Paul S. Rivarez
01 Dec 2017
The Institute of Weed Science, Entomology and Plant Pathology (IWEP) conducted a two-day Academic Program Improvement (API) workshop on Nov. 30 to Dec. 1, 2017, in collaboration with the private business sector or ‘industry partners’, government agencies, retired staff, professor emeriti and other state universities and colleges (SUCs). The activity has the theme, “Revisit for Matching Academic Programs of the IWEP Through Conduct of Collaboration Meeting and Workshop with the Stakeholders”.
Some of the eminent academicians that graced the activity were, Dr. Romulo G. Davide, Professor Emeritus of Plant Pathology, Dr. Augustin B. Molina, retired Professor of Plant Pathology, Dr. Avelino D. Raymundo, Professor Emeritus of Plant Pathology, Dr. Narceo Bajet, former Professor of Plant Pathology and Dr. Aurora M. Baltazar, retired Professor of Weed Science. Executive officers and representatives from various pest control, seed and agricultural companies also participated in the workshop, which includes BASF, East-West Seed Company, Del Monte, Bayer and Dole. Faculty members from State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) namely, Laguna State Polytechnic University (LSPU) and Southern Luzon State University (SLSU) also participated the said event.
IWEP officials, led by Dr. Sheryl A. Yap (OIC-Director), felt the need to conduct a dialogue and workshop with the industry partners particularly those involved in crop pest and diseases management to further improve the courses. They also recognize the importance of the inputs from the stakeholders that serve as employers of the graduates from IWEP. The stakeholders also participate in collaborative research, technology extension and in catering students’ internship programs. Thus, in order to improve the academic programs of the institute, curricular assessments were conducted and identified some points for improvement. The activity also welcomed contributions such as pledges for infrastructure and facility support. The workshop is followed by plenary sessions and synthesis discussions to finalize the outputs of the activity and future plans for implementation.
During the presentation of the outputs of the groups, Dr. Joey I. Orajay, Research Director of Del Monte Philippines and former Associate Professor of Plant Pathology, emphasized the importance of having an end goal in mind when IWEP do the revisions of their curricular programs. Competencies must be tailored with the needs of the current state of the industry, in terms of research and operations, sales, regulatory and policy-making. Institution of courses focusing on general pesticide science, crop protection biotechnology and incorporation of more field activities in order to enhance practical capabilities of the students in field research and data analysis were also emphasized. Setting up of molecular biology laboratory and other facilities were also discussed.
IWEP currently offers two major programs under the BS Agriculture degree, namely Entomology and Plant Pathology programs and a soon-to-be-offerred Weed Science program. The institute wants to revitalize their objectives and the topics of courses to strengthen its academic programs in accordance with the needs of the future employers. The API workshop is funded by the Office of the UPLB Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs through the College of Agriculture and Food Science (CAFS) Dean’s Office.
IWEP' Best and Brightest recognized at the CAFS Breakfast Reception and Recognition ceremonies
A total of five awards were bagged by IWEP faculty and students in the recently concluded Pest Management Council of the Philippines (PMCP), Inc. Annual Scientific Conference on May 10-12, 2017 in Malay, Aklan. The conference was held at the Crown Regency Resort and Convention Center at the world-famous Boracay Island, with the theme, “Strategic Pest Management… Beyond ASEAN Integration”. The three-day activity was concluded with a banquet and the ceremonies for the Pest Management Awards (PMA) and the Best Undergraduate Thesis (BUT) Awards.
Dr. Pio A. Javier, a retired Research Professor of Entomology at IWEP was awarded with the PMA in Extension and Community Development. This award was given in recognition of his dedication to develop crop protection technologies and its promotion and extension to farmers, DA technicians and students. Dr. Javier and his team developed biological-based management strategies against insect pests of vegetables and corn, such as earwigs. He is very well known for his research in the management of dengue mosquitoes using oviposition attractants and the predatory water bug.
The PMA in instruction was given to Dr. Teresita U. Dalisay, IWEP’s OIC-Director and Associate Professor of plant pathology. A researcher and an extension personnel first, then a teacher and now an administrator all-in-one, Dr. Dalisay has been in the four corners of the institution, encompassing more than 30 years of service. She is well known to her colleagues and students as the ‘Mother Fungus’, primarily because of her vast experience and expertise in Fungal Taxonomy and Ecology. As of the writing, she already mentored 24 undergraduate and 7 graduate students towards completion of their degrees. Some of these students have won Best Thesis Awards and presented their study both locally and internationally. Lastly, she also guided high school students in their Science Investigatory Projects, which led them to win in the regional and national levels.
IWEP fresh graduates also bested other students all over the Philippines and nabbed all the three BUT awards, which are sponsored by the PMCP and LEADS Agri.
Ms. Jillian E. Timple won the BUT Award in Entomology for her thesis entitled, “Molecular marker-based detection of primary bacterial endosymbiont associated with the coconut scale insects, Aspidiotus destructor (Signoret) and Aspidiotus rigidus (Reyne)”. Ms. Timple is under the guidance of Dr. Barbara L. Caoili, Professor of Entomology.
Ms. Rachele L. de Torres bested other plant pathology thesis students in the Philippines and bagged the BUT Award in Plant Pathology for her thesis entitled, “Influence of host genotype on the population structure of Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzicola (Fang et al.) Swings et al.”. Dr. Enda Y. Ardales, Professor of Plant Pathology, is Ms. De Torres’s adviser.
Lastly, Mr. Aaron Paul A. Aguas was given the BUT in Weed Science for his thesis entitled, “The reproductive potential and seed longevity of ivy gourd (Coccinia grandis L.) Voight ”. Mr. Aguas’s victory would not be possible without the support from his adviser, Prof. Juanito V. Bariuan, a weed science Associate Professor at IWEP.