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UPLB PhD students attend global citizenship Confab, visit South Korean education system

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by Roderica R. Camacho

Fifteen UPLB PhD Development Studies students, all majoring in Education and Development, participated in the “3rd International Conference on Global Citizenship Education: Platform on Pedagogy and Practice” held at the Lotte Hotel Seoul, South Korea on September 5-6, 2018. They comprise the students of CED 304 (International Comparative Education course) handled by Dr. Emely D. Dicolen, assistant professor of CPAf.

The conference is co-organized by Asia-Pacific Center of Education for International Understanding (APCEIU); the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea; and in partnership with United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

The Philippine Department of Education Secretary Leonor Briones and 8th Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon were among the key personalities who took part in the conference. In the sidelights, the conference paved way for UPLB PhD students who are all DepEd senior administrators to have an exclusive meeting and exchange with Secretary Briones in which significant matters about the current issues on Philippine education were discussed. The UPLB participants gained insights and deeper understanding on the implementation of global citizenship education not only from the various presentations but also from the dynamics of interaction with participants from 63 countries around the world. The student-representatives Cherry Lou De Mesa-Repia and Frederick Byrd presented the best practices in their respective school divisions in a seminar entitled “Dialogue on Innovative Approaches to Education,” a joint session with APCEIU fellowship participants. 

Meanwhile, the students’ visit covered many phases of Korean educational system. Among the schools visited were Yeun Kindergarten, Shinyongsan Elementary School, Jungwha High School, and Seoul National University. These school visits include class observations, tour of the facilities, and lecture-orientation. In Jungwha High School and Yuen Kindergarten School, the participants showcased a Philippine folk dance and had an interaction with the children in teaching sessions. This included a chance to teach the students a Philippine traditional dance.

The UPLB PhD student delegation also met with Philippine Ambassador to Korea His Excellency Raul S. Hernandez at the Philippine Embassy in Seoul. Ambassador Hernandez emphasized that the value of love of country must be given premium gain in the classrooms for he believes that this is the secret of Korea’s fast development. 

The 13-day comparative education visit of the students to South Korea concluded with a seminar at the ASEAN-Korean Center in Seoul. They witnessed the presentation of Filipino educators in Korea, which centered on their experiences and insights. It was designed to provide context to the many features of Korean education that the students observed and captured during the visit. This session enabled the participants to reflect and appreciate the strengths and weaknesses of both worlds of education, the Philippines and Korea. The facilitators Dr. Joeffrey M. Calimag and Prof. Maria Aurea T. Princena are both UP alumni.


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