Gender Mainstreaming in Higher Education in ASEAN 2017

By Office of the President

Posted on November 27, 2017

President Urdujah A. Tejada delivered a message for Hon. Patricia Licuanan as a tribute to her championing for Gender and Development on November 29, 2017 at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila during the 5th Higher Education Summit on Gender Issues. She was chosen to represent all the private and public higher education institutions in the Philippines.

“No one can better articulate the aspirations of women for equality, as well as their frustrations and anguish, than a woman. And no route is more expeditious and more promising towards cultivating a national culture of respect for all and dismantling the mechanisms of discrimination than education. This necessary combination of the credible enunciation of the cause of women by a woman and influence over the dynamics of education and its architectonics have felicitously come together in The Honorable Patricia Licuanan, Chair of the Commission on Education and also principal architect of the higher education program on gender sensitivity and the elimination of discrimination. Tonight, we pay her tribute!

With Chair Licuanan taking the ship of higher education through then-uncharted waters, the Commission on Higher Education organized and hosted Gender and Discrimination summits from 2011 to 2013, with all State Universities and Colleges becoming parties to a GAD Accord in 2011. This committed all state higher education institutions in the country not only to the advocacy but more important to the concrete fruition of GAD concerns and such legal instruments as the Magna Carta for Women and their sources in international law, such as the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women.

CHED Memorandum Order No. 2015-01 laid down the guidelines on Gender Mainstreaming in higher education institutions, with the result that in each college or university, there is a distinct desk, office or department that takes responsibility for the implementation of the Commission’s GAD program. Chair Licuanan was not going to leave the realization of the goals of this endeavor to the vagaries of the goodwill or the indifference of college or university officials!

As a result of these directives from the Commission steered by its Chair, the research, extension and linkages departments of higher education institutions have transferred issues, plans, and activities on gender equality and the elimination of discrimination from the peripheries right to the very core of university and college life!

And the country’s higher education institutions have responded not begrudgingly but with eagerness and with fervor. In the Cagayan State University – a university of eight campuses and close to thirty thousand students that I presently head, aside from a University GAD Director, each campus has a GAD Coordinator, and in the recently-formulated University Development Plan covering 2016 to 2022, GAD occupies a prominent place in the development vision of the university and is one of the indicia of the university’s growth and progress.

Very often in life, it does happen that she who sows is not always she who reaps. But in respect to the seeds of institutionalized attention, concern and active commitment to gender equality and to the dismantling of discrimination, Chair Patricia Licuanan has sown very good seeds, and she has been a most untiring sower. And while we look forward to a bountiful harvest in the future, even now, our Chair can take comfort in the heads heavy with grain with which God assures her that she has done not only well but admirably in serving the Filipino people and keeping them vigilant about that which is most precious and fundamental to us all – our humanity.

Chair Licuanan, receive the tribute of a grateful community of higher education institutions!

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