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Albay, Legazpi, Philippines

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53rd Commencement Exercises

To speak of new beginnings, is to speak of the promise of better days; of something to look forward to. Commencement exercises are opportunities for new beginnings.  As your new and 9th President, I feel privileged and honored to share with you my thoughts on your momentous event.

Before we can move towards new beginnings, it is best to look back with gratitude to the journeys we’ve had as one Bicol University family. After all, we cannot move forward without looking back with gratitude to the past leaders and administrators of Bicol University who made this institution into a force to reckon with in terms of quality education. Thank you to all the past presidents and administrators who made us into a strong Bicol University community!

Dear 2023 graduates, you have been placed in the most trying circumstances the past three years under the strain of the greatest global crisis we have ever encountered. You are a product of the pandemic times. You have been through the worst of times.


Yet, you are here. Finishing your degree. Finally graduating in the normal, face-to-face set-up, from a resilient Bicol University with the legacy of a quality education.  In spite of the difficulties, we – at Bicol University – have persevered. You have persevered. That led you to this moment as graduates.

A Bicol University education is a great blessing. It opens a lot of opportunities.

These are good reasons to start your new beginning as you carve out your future.


Dear 2023 graduates, if there ever is a value worth practicing, it is the value of gratefulness. The ability to be thankful in all circumstances and to see the blessings in every situation is something that can also be integrated in one’s life, when faith is abundant and ever-present.


The three years that we were under the gloom of the pandemic have seemingly blotted out anything positive. Seriously, those were the times when we thought heaven was deaf to the cumulative prayers of the world. Those were the times when it was so difficult finding anything positive. Yet, because we have always been given the indomitable, unbending, and undefeated spirit – which can only come not from ourselves, but from Divine intervention – we were able to persevere. A light slowly began to shine on what we can consider as the “worst of times.”

When the traditional means of livelihood were cut-off, we found ways to cope. Our way of coping with the crisis eventually led to mobile delivery services and online sellers. We were kept inside our homes but we rediscovered family and the joy of taking a long but much-needed break.

 But this I tell you: dear graduates, resiliency is not something you develop in just one incident. It is a product of many persevering nights and days and months, and years of telling yourself again and again that you just need to move ever forward – to get back on your feet. It is made up of a series of little sacrifices that brings out bits and pieces of perseverance. Your presence today and those of your loved ones speak of an enduring commitment to persevere despite all the odds.


Sabi nga, ang pinakamahalaga sa pamilyang Pilipino ay edukasyon.


So here we are now – celebrating our perseverance towards getting into the new normal and embracing the post-COVID recovery in every aspect – from education to livelihood; even evolving new and better ways to deliver teaching and learning. This is a value we must integrate if we are to push for our dreams.

At present, with the transition to the post-COVID recovery scenario, we are faced with various opportunities. These opportunities call for both acceptance and enhancement; if we are to seamlessly embrace as well as consider opportunities that abound. But we cannot do this, when we are set in our ways. We need to shift perspectives and look at other possibilities from various angles.

It is only now that I fully understand why obedience is a virtue. Most often than not, we find ourselves thinking highly of our ideas – we insist on what we want without really considering that there could be better ideas and concepts around.


This attitude kills innovation. It destroys faith. It is intended for each of us that we may learn to accept our differences, celebrate our diversity, and embrace our humanity even as we develop critical thinking and the ability to think for ourselves.

The ability to shift, adapt, and change perspectives is intended for each of us that we may learn to accept our differences, celebrate our diversity, and embrace our humanity even as we develop critical thinking and the ability to think for ourselves.

Today is your day of celebrating new beginnings. Your graduation gives you the chance to renew your commitment to continuing to become productive scholars with a heart for transformative leadership and collaborative service and the continuous nurturing of your character as you evolve and contribute to building better and sustainable societies.


However, we can only celebrate new beginnings fully and wholeheartedly, when we learn to change our old mindset – when we let go of our fears and limitations and start changing perspectives; so that we can continuously evolve with the changing times.

 Flexibility. Adaptability. Resiliency. These are the necessary attitudes that each of us must continue to develop by learning to shift and change our perspective when necessary and should the situation call for it.

But this I tell you: dear graduates, resiliency is not something you develop in just one incident. It is a product of many persevering nights and days and months, and years of telling yourself again and again that you just need to move ever forward – to get back on your feet. It is made up of a series of little sacrifices that brings out bits and pieces of perseverance. It is composed of a series of breaking points where the human resolve to continue becomes the saving grace. 


Finally, to succeed in any aspect of life, we must be keen on identifying and finding opportunities for growth and development not only of ourselves but most importantly of others and our communities. Each time we find opportunities and develop ourselves, we must always be aware of our higher purpose for developing ourselves. That is, we find opportunities for ourselves because we want to extend these to others and beyond. We develop ourselves to develop others. We cannot give what we do not have.

I challenge each of you to equip yourselves to the point that you can create opportunities and provide these to others. Creating opportunities mean nurturing your innovative spirit and creative mind.

Dear graduates, activate the goodness in you. Seek to become blessings. Walk your talk. Be a person of dignity. Let your scholastic excellence extend to leadership, service, and character as you continue to celebrate life, creating opportunities, and changing perspectives, one meaningful day at a time.


In conclusion, I invite each of you to be still. Be silent. And let these prayerful thoughts guide you as you leave the portals of Bicol University.

God, we entrust these graduates into your care.  Help them to look at their lives through Your lens, without outside influence, in true appreciation for what You are doing in their lives. Let the gifts and talents that You have given them be their guide to become good stewards of their time, treasures and talents. Guide them and help them find their places to serve and reach out to others in their prospective careers, families, and volunteer work. Open their eyes that they may see success in the light of Your love. Most of all, amidst all the distractions and voices, allow them to hear Your voice above all others. Amen.


Congratulations, dear graduates!

Dios Mabalos!

Short Message for World Teacher’s Day

Tuesday October 5,2021

As we celebrate this year’s World Teacher’s Day amid the COVID-19 pandemic, may we all tip our hats to our teachers who tirelessly and passionately guide the journey of our students as they navigate a new learning environment.

Taking on the journey as a metaphor for learning, students are like travelers who need teachers as tour guides to lead them through new concepts, ideas and discoveries in world that is undeniably becoming digital. Akin to savvy tour guides, teachers provide the much needed knowledge and wisdom to take their travelers on their unique learning journeys. They provide inspiration, encouraging those who face a steep learning curve, to continue the journey despite the winding roads and potholes along the way. Tour guides remind the travelers that learning is a journey. As such, “arriving at a destination” is not the end goal as learning is a continuous process.

To the 632 efficient and passionate teachers of Bicol University, I extend my heartfelt gratitude to your commitment to provide “world-class” education to our students even in the midst of the crisis. Thank you for your sacrifices and willingness to adopt new learning pedagogies in order to adapt to the new learning environment.

To all the BUeños, may you all find the time to thank your teachers for their inspiring dedication in making this world a better place.

Happy World Teacher’s Day!

AACCUP Accreditation

Wednesday January 5,2022

This month, Bicol University, the premiere state university in the region, will once again submit six of its programs for accreditation as proof of our commitment to achieve academic excellence.

Our decision to embark on this online review process is a testament to our fervent desire to ensure quality assurance in all areas of our operations, cognizant that passing the standards, and being awarded the accreditation status by no less than the Accrediting Agency of Chartered Colleges and Universities of the Philippines (AACCUP) Inc., a highly reputable accrediting agency in the country, is crucial in fulfilling our mission of providing quality education to our students.

Through the years, our university has welcomed AACCUP with open arms. This has yielded positive results as BU’s various academic programs, which have undergone AACUP’s internal and external assessment, have shown further improvement, thereby ensuring that our curricular offerings are at par with the best universities in the Philippines and in the world.

Consequently, this sustained partnership with AACCUP, has shaped the practice of the entire Bicol University family, with accreditation becoming a way of life for the BU personnel.   To our competent accreditors, as you peruse the documents which the departments and colleges have meticulously prepared for you, I pray for wisdom, strength, and patience as going through these piles of electronic documents can be very exhausting and tiring. May you see the core values of Scholarship, Leadership, Character, and Service in the outputs that we have prepared for you. Rest assured that these core values are the guiding principles that govern our practice in the university.

To my beloved BU family, especially the faculty and staff of the six programs, thank you for your tireless support and meaningful engagement in achieving our vision, mission, goals and objectives. As your President, I commend your indomitable spirit to take on the challenge of submitting your programs amid the pandemic.  This is proof of your commitment to ensure that BU’s programs remain responsive and relevant in today’s world.

As Bicol University sets its sights on the future, we vow to sustain our gains, and create more milestones as we focus on improving our academic programs along these key 10 areas—faculty, curriculum and instruction, support to students, research, extension and community involvement, library, physical plant and facilities, laboratories, and administration—in our vision to become a “world-class university producing change agents for social transformation and development.”

Thank you very much, and let’s keep going, for together, we can accomplish more!

Christmas Message

January 5,2022 Wednesday

Before we get lost in the frenzy of last-minute Christmas shopping, and frantic preparations for our Noche Buena, let me greet each and every one of you a Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year!

2021 has been a year of challenges and opportunities for Bicol University. With the COVID-19 pandemic still restricting face-to-face classes and mass gathering, the past months have shown that flexibility, adaptability, and innovation are crucial in ensuring the successful operation of any academic institution.

In the face of unprecedented changes upending the established order, we at Bicol University have adapted and thrived in the “new normal” by putting in place strategic measures, and implementing new policies and guidelines that allowed us to navigate our COVID-19 environment without sacrificing our commitment to academic excellence.

 As you all very well know, at the heart of Bicol University’s programs and initiatives is the desire to ensure the safety and protection of the BU personnel amid the global health crisis that has already claimed millions of lives worldwide.

As we prepare to take on a new year, may we build on our 2021 milestones to jumpstart the year 2022 with so much optimism, passion, and hope. May our accomplishments in 2021 further fortify our collective resolve to “make the best better” by never wavering on our commitment to provide quality education to our students.

This holiday season, as we celebrate the birth of our Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ, may our souls be nourished, and our spirit be renewed so we will see that the true essence of Christmas is Christ alone, who, despite being the Only Begotten Son of God, humbled himself in obedience to God—from being born in the humblest of circumstances and lowliest state up to his death like a criminal on the cross. May His life be an example for all of us as we live in total submission to God’s sovereign will.

May this season be a season of joy, peace, and goodwill. And may we seize the opportunity to reflect on all that has gone before, and what is to come, cognizant that the past is nothing but a memory, and the future lies in our hands. May our Christmas be nothing but merry as we live in accordance to God’s master plan for our lives.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


To the members of the Bicol University family: Warmest Welcome to another academic journey of learning anchored on faith and hope!

Faculty, staff, students – as I welcome each of you to another academic year in this continuing pandemic, let me remind you of this dictum: No progress is ever possible without making decisions.

Each day is a decision-making day. Even when we do not hold managerial or administrative positions and designations, we are always in the process of managing – whether that means managing our life, or that of others – the clear point is, we are managers in a world of options and decisions. We are leaders either of our on life – or others, and even the larger community. The choices we make, will ultimately affect others.

One of the best options, Bicol University decided to adopt, is the transition from Flexible Learning to Blended Learning. This transition simply means we need to constantly evolve with the changing education landscape of our times. I am happy and thankful that we have evolved to face-to-face or on-site learning as part of our blended mode.

Today, more than ever, your decision-making is essential to the way we manage teaching and learning. In this new normal, nothing is more important than or as relevant as the way we choose our teaching and learning modality. In this instance, the current and probably the best practice is the blended learning. However, what has been highlighted by this pandemic is our transition to Digital Education.

Slowly, we seem to have transitioned well to the point that we are no longer extremely afraid of technology, even as we continue to battle with its accessibility. We have in fact, conquered our fears and ventured into getting to know the advantages of digital education to the point that we have devised various ways of optimizing it in the context of this new normal.

But we have to continuously keep in mind that merely knowing how to use technology or identifying what technology to use for what purpose is not enough. We need to come up with the best possible means of optimizing its use as a platform to enhance our existing teaching and learning modalities. Digital Education – whatever your digital platform is – will enable us to choose well and optimize the way we teach and learn.

Let’s continue working together towards our vision of a “world-class university producing leaders and change agents for social transformation and development.”



We are now on the third year of the COVID19 pandemic. Just when we thought there might just be the tiniest glimmer of returning to normal, at least in our educational set-up, with majority of our students and personnel vaccinated; we are again in a slump. We are under Alert level 3 – which simply means, even the limited face-to-face classes that most of us are longing for, are again temporarily suspended. We have to go back to the way we were before 2022 started – with the BUCET back to BUCESS, and the at least 30% of the total population in public gatherings. Indeed, the current Omicron COVID19 variant is a frightening reality.

But we have carried on, as one Bicol University united with a common resolve to overcome this dreaded COVID19 virus. As one family, we renew our commitment to our Bicolano scholars, their parents, and our stakeholders, to sustain and further improve on our systems and processes. This year, we have formalized the creation of the University Crisis Management Committee, to ensure that all the necessary protocols for the health and safety of our clients, students, and personnel, will be strictly followed and imposed.

So, to my dear Bicol University family, please stay safe and keep in mind that this, too, shall pass, and with God’s grace, together, we shall overcome all obstacles. Until then, I am one with each of you in prayer for our continued safety and protection, and for an immediate end to this pandemic.