Passionate, persevering, praiseworthy: The 2020 Outstanding Teachers

They have unique stories to tell about their teaching profession, but their passion and perseverance have made them stand out from among their colleagues.

Dr. Dinah Pura T. Depositario and Arlene C. Gutierrez of the Department of Agribusiness Management and Entrepreneurship and Dr. Ireneo L. Lit, Jr. of the Institute of Biological Sciences lead the way in how effective mentoring should be, in the process earning for them the outstanding teacher award.

Dr. Depositario, who mentored the likes of Senator Migz Zubiri, GMA-7 Sr. Operations Manager Christine Cherry Florcruz, and UPOU Dean Primo Garcia during their student days, is consistently known for being a motivating teacher and adviser, competent department chair, a capable leader in entrepreneurship course development, book author, and an award-winning researcher.

She wears many hats as expected of a UP professor, but she remains faithful to her core as a teacher. Her teaching style is innovative, her approach in teaching flexible and individualized, and her words, inspiring.

As a life-long learner herself, she introduced to UPLB new concepts that she had learned, such as multivariate analysis techniques from her Doctor of Business Administration (De La Salle University) and the Case for the Case Method from an international faculty visit grant (University of Michigan).

Dr. Depositario shares the same academic department with a fellow awardee, Arlene Gutierrez.

At a young age and with a magna cum laude medal from UPLB and an MBA from the Asian Institute of Management, Gutierrez is much vaunted for subject matter mastery. Her eloquence and efficiency are sworn to by both her students at the bachelor’s and master’s levels. Yes, she is already a graduate faculty member at such a young age.

The intellectually engaging class discussions that she facilitates are backed by her actual practice as a consultant of academic institutions, banks, and companies, and quite recently, as associate dean of the College of Economics and Management.

This teacher’s rise in academe is truly phenomenal. Dr. Ireneo Lit, Jr. served as a research and extension personnel for more than 20 years before he shifted to full-time teaching. His scientific productivity is unparalleled and his rise to full professorship in a matter of five years is meteoric.

Aside from ensuring a classroom setting that is engaging and supportive, Dr. Lit is also noted for promoting the culture of science and research in his experiential and discussion-based approach in teaching.

“I have always viewed university teaching as inseparable and inextricably connected with research. One always supports and fortifies the other and both are functionally linked with public service,” said Dr. Lit, a UP Scientist III, a former director of the Museum of Natural History, and now the editor-in-chief of The Philippine Entomologist. (Kristine E. Araguas, Mark Jayson E. Gloria, and Juan Paolo A. Aquino)

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