Search for next CFNR dean is on

The search for the next dean of the College of Forestry and Natural Resources (CFNR) is now on as the second term of Dean Willie Abasolo comes to a close on March 2.

The search process progressed with the reporting of CFNR accomplishments from 2017 to 2020 by Dr. Abasolo and the presentation of the plans and programs of nominees to the position via video conference on Feb. 5.

Dr. Janette Malata-Silva, vice chancellor for student affairs, chairs the search committee. Dr. Joselito Florendo, representative of the UP president to the committee, facilitated the virtual program.

The nominees, Dr. Abasolo, Dr. Nathaniel Bantayan, and Prof. Marlo Mendoza who are all faculty members at CFNR also presented their vision and plans for the college after the reporting of accomplishments.

Dr. Abasolo, outgoing dean, presented the accomplishments of CFNR in relation to its vision as an innovative, internationally engaged and globally competitive college unified in the sustainable management of forests and natural resources.

CFNR continued to produce excellent graduates as evidenced by its recognition as a top performing school by the Professional Regulation Commission in 2018-2019. CFNR has also been accorded the Center of Excellence status by the Commission on Higher Education. 

Keeping the BS Forestry degree program updated was one of CFNR’s accomplishments with its institution of six new courses and setting up of Forestore where students are trained in entrepreneurship. Forestore sells non-timber forest products.

Two batches of students completed the off-campus offering of the MS Natural Resources Conservation program. It is developing the MSc in Tropical Forest Biodiversity with the Universiti Putra Malaysia and the Bogor Agricultural University.

The college has produced eight UP Scientist awardees over the period. The UP Scientist Award is given to faculty members and researchers in UP who demonstrated scientific creativity and productivity under the UP Scientific Productivity System.

It also had a total of 37 professorial chair and 27 faculty grant holders under the One UP Professorial Chair and Faculty Grant; and 3 UPLB Centennial Professorial Chair and 1 UPLB faculty grant holder.

CFNR completed 8, 16, and 2 researches in 2018, 2019, and 2020, respectively, and despite the pandemic, is conducting core-funded, UPLB and UP System, as well as nationally and internationally funded researches.

Its training units, the Institute of Agroforestry, Forestry Development Center, and the Training Center for Tropical Resources and Ecosystems Sustainability trained 394, 294, and 184 individuals in 2018, 2019, and 2020, respectively, in various short courses in forestry. 

In 2018, CFNR conducted the 2nd International Conference on Integrated Natural Resources and Environment Management.

CFNR strengthened its international and national linkages with the Society of Filipino Foresters, Inc., the Philippine Forestry Education Network, International Organization for Standardization and

Nagoya University in Japan.

Infrastructure development was also a concern of CFNR with refurbishments of old facilities such as the Lansigan auditorium and the road construction projects. Alumni donated one million pesos to improve the Lansigan auditorium and responded quickly by raising and donating PhP 180,000 to UPLB in support of its COVID-19 response. 

With an alumnus facilitating, the Department of Science and Technology donated a bus to CFNR which it has refurbished and named Molave. Moreover, CFNR acquired a service vehicle for the Office of the Dean.

The other members of the Search Committee are Dr. Merlyne M. Paunlagui, Virma Rea G. Lee, Oliver N. Felismino, Kyle Francisco who is the student representative, and Divinia B. Padua.

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