Trump Presidency: America’s Role in a Changing Global Politics

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“From this day forward, a new vision will govern our land. From this day forward, it’s going to be only America first, America first,” vowed US 45th President Donald Trump during his inauguration on January 20 where he outlined his administration’s platforms described as ‘nationalist’, ‘populist’ and importantly an “isolationist view” of U.S. global role.

While the Republican President is set to redefine a new vision of “America first” for the next four years, it is inevitable for a deeply-engaged United States to restrain itself and downplay its global role as a ‘superpower’ especially amidst a rebalancing of the international system, which is becoming increasingly unpredictable brought by a number of growing economic and military powers as well as unexpected events in most important regions and nations around the world.

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OBE-dizing the Curriculum: A Student Perspective

As the University unfolds a new year of possible reinforcement of some institutional reforms, we come to look at what has transpired during the first six months of the academic year which was characterized by a number of changes—the shifting of the academic calendar and the OBEdizing of the curriculum which are all in response to globalization and internationalization of higher education.

While everyone seems to welcome the shifting of the academic calendar, one thing remains worth a concern is the shifting to the Outcomes-Based Education approach in the teaching-learning process. Well, ideally, the approach is a great challenge laid before higher educational institutions in the country such as the University as it encourages raising of educational standards. However, on a sad note, there are lapses and inconsistencies that seem arising from its implementation in the institution.

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On Human Dignity & Respect

President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s unprecedented reforms, massive ‘cleaning’ campaign against drugs and criminality, tough rhetoric statements, unwise comments on national and international issues, and unpredictable government policies have rather warranted, not public order, but spurred widespread uncertainties, political struggles, and diplomatic conflicts.

While President Duterte’s promised six months to eradicate drugs in the country is gaining momentum with hundreds of thousands of drug suspects surrendering to police authorities, human rights groups are, however, alarmed with the increasing number of suspects killed in drug-related summary executions, vigilante killings and police operations. Months since he assumed the country’s top government post, the toll of drug-related deaths has reached over thousands constituting about two-thirds killed in police operations while one-thirds accounted to unidentified person or extra-judicial killings.

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‘Magat Dam is Coming to Town’: Assuring IP’s Rights

That’s the word, and you’re right. Another Magat Dam, but in another name and greater in electric-generating capacity, is being eyed in Ifugao. A 390-megawatt (MW) hydroelectric power plant which will be known as Alimit Hydropower Complex is taking underway by SN Aboitiz Power (SNAP) Group here at the middle of the province covering the municipalities of Aguinaldo, Lagawe, Lamut, and Mayoyao.

Nonetheless, one might wonder and some may not even bother knowing what is this all about—its impacts and effects to the Ifugao province as a cultural community in terms of environmental, cultural, social, economic, and political aspects. But, I guess even if you’re at the middle of reading this article, I still suppose, you wouldn’t care, right? I admit it. I myself didn’t care since it was first conceived many years ago not until I was prompted by an opportunity to be part of it. Well, I say, you should. Less than 10 years from now, you would wish you should have really cared.

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Redefining Academic Excellence

Such a noble dream Ifugao State University (IFSU) has when it envisioned, six years ago, of an institution of Academic Centers of Excellence where educational programs are highly standardized and are at par with globally-recognized universities.

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Even I, myself, am very much ‘overwhelmed’ and ‘inspired’ that it encourages me to work hard on my part as a student and a campus writer. In fact, wanting to share my journalistic skills to the university was one reason that drove me back to enroll here. Yes, it was; and the rest about ‘me’ is already history. Now enough with so much talk, let’s go back.

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With its four major key thrusts—Instruction, Research, Extension & Training, Income Generation—serving as its most fundamental guiding principles in its quest for glory, IFSU continues to make advancements, as they believe, as shown by its increasing national board passing rates and accreditation levels, improving faculty profile, and growing international linkages with other universities.

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When ‘Quality Education’ meets ‘Money’

Beginning Academic Year 2015-2016, students of old and new faces are welcomed with a major overhauling of the organizational structure of the whole university extending even far and wide to its satellite campuses. From last school year’s six colleges, students are caught up by a rather ‘irrational’ merging of the different colleges, departments and programs to form only three colleges—the College of Education & Arts; the College of Tourism, Home Science & Agriculture; and the College of Criminology, Computing Science & Health Sciences.

Accordingly, the merging of the colleges and programs was to meet the minimum four degree programs as agreed and approved by the Administrative Council (ADCO). This was also in compliance to the National Budget Circular (NBC) Numbers 404, series of 1989, and Numbers 548, series of 2013, of the Department of Budget Management (DBM), as recommended by the Commission on Audit (COA).

For the information of everybody, these DBM policies are the rules and regulations governing the grant of Representation Allowance and Transportation Allowance (RATA) to selected government officials such as university officials like Vice Presidents, Deans of Colleges, Directors of Centers, Institutes/Services and Satellite Campuses, and Department Heads to cover related expenses in connection with the actual performance of their respective functions.

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