NISMED participates in 1st UP system-wide REPS Conference

Four NISMED staff attended the 1st UP system-wide Research Extension and Professional Staff Conference held on 12-13November 2013 in BIOTECH, Los Baños. They were Dr. Amelia Punzalan, Ms. Maria Lourdes Agad, Ms. Monalisa Sasing, and Ms. Arlene de la Cruz. With the theme, “Recognizing REPS’ Roles, Achievements and Concerns in UP” the conference provided a venue for the REPS from various constituent units of UP to echo their concerns and address issues related to their roles, qualifications, tenure, and promotion. It also provided an opportunity for a dialogue between the REPS sector and the UP Administration represented by Dr. Gisela Concepcion, Vice President for Academic Affairs, and Dr. Maragtas SV. Amante, Vice President for Administration.

During the introductory speech of Dr. Concepcion, she expressed the significance of the conference as a venue for the UP administration to listen to the points of view of the REPS sector of the university.

On the first day of the conference, Professor Emeritus Evelyn Mae T. Mendoza talked on “REPS― a Force and Partner of UP Towards Attaining World Class Research University Status” which recognized the role of REPS staff in improving the scientific productivity and status of UP as a research university. As such, she encouraged REPS to produce more publications which will make UP comparable to its Asian neighbors, and to consider applying for the Scientific Career System

Four NISMED staff pose with the REPS-UP Diliman team after the conference.

On the second day of the conference, Dr. Reynaldo V. Ebora, Director of BIOTECH Los Baños, talked on “UP REPS and Productivity: Realities, Opportunities and Challenges” and initiated the identification of the challenges that most REPS of UP face such as: 1) job mismatch and misuse of REPS position; 2) low ceilings of REPS items; 3) low morale; 4) low funding for research and extension; 5) inadequate laboratory facilities and infrastructure; 6) unclear administrative policies; and 7) insufficient administrative support.

Workshops were done in the afternoons of the first and second days which served as a venue for the REPS to identify and raise issues. The UP administration immediately responded to the issued raised. The dialogues led to the formation of an ad hoc committee which will serve to finalize the draft of the REPS manual.